Cable companies will soon be able to make their video-on-demand (VOD) libraries available directly through user Blu-ray players, thanks to a partnership between between Clearleap and RCDb. That could open up new services to consumers and a new revenue stream for service providers without either having to invest in new set-top boxes or other hardware.
RCDb provides the technology that powers BD-Live’s interactive features on Internet-connected Blu-ray players, while Clearleap enables cable companies to roll out IP-based VOD services. Together, Clearleap and RCDb give pay TV providers the ability to serve traditional VOD content directly to Blu-ray players, allowing them to offer those services through hardware that consumers already own.
The service is run through the user’s home network, meaning there’s no need for even a coax cable connection to the TV for users to get access to the cable provider’s VOD library. There is one downside, however: To get the VOD capabilities to work, users will need a Blu-ray disc from their cable provider. The setup is similar to streaming Netflix videos on the PlayStation 3, which requires a special BD-Live disc to connect to the instant streaming service. Not surprisingly, RCDb also provides the technology behind that implementation.
All in all, the Clearleap-RCDb partnership could enable cable companies to theoretically provide VOD services in rooms of the home where a set-top box isn’t deployed, or in places where subscribers have old equipment. It allows subscribers to access and consume that content — and a way for cable companies to charge for it — without putting up the cash to deploy a second or third set-top box.
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