New Cablevision service connects computer and television screens; Mac version in the works

Apple Online StoreCablevision Systems Corp. today announced the development of a new, first-of-its-kind service, called PC to TV Media Relay, that will allow its digital cable customers to relay whatever information or images currently appear on their computer screen to their television in real-time, without any additional equipment in the home, using only the company’s advanced fiber-rich network.

This innovative service will allow Cablevision customers, with the press of a button, to transfer anything available for display on their PC, whether the information is stored on their PC, transferred from a drive or accessible on the Web, to the television for viewing on a dedicated channel that is accessible only by that customer. Cablevision plans to begin a technical trial of PC to TV Media Relay for the PC by June 2010.

“With our PC to TV Media Relay service, we are putting an end to the need for families to huddle around their laptops or PCs to watch content together. This new service will make it easy for our television customers to take broadband services including Internet video, as well as family photos or anything else displayed on a computer screen and move it to the television with the click of the mouse,” said Tom Rutledge, Cablevision’s Chief Operating Officer, in the press release. “Cablevision has always provided our customers with advanced and easy-to-use services that leverage the power of our fiber-rich network to deliver the best possible experience.”

Specific examples of the kind of content that consumers currently view on their personal computers, and will now be viewable on the television include:
• Personal stored media such as photos, home videos and music
• Internet content including streaming video sites and audio such as Internet radio
• Some productivity applications including email, documents and spreadsheets
• Other Desktop applications such as widgets

The service will enable the customer to securely send information on their PC in real-time through Cablevision’s network facilities to a dedicated channel viewable only by that customer. The service will completely eliminate the need to change input settings on the TV, as is the case with most in-home networking alternatives, or to purchase and install expensive additional equipment. A simple one-time software download to the computer will enable the PC to TV Media Relay service.
The technology that enables PC to TV Media Relay may also be extended to other consumer devices in the home including handheld devices running applications and connected to in-home wireless networks. PC to TV Media Relay for Mac is also in development.

Source: Cablevision Systems Corporation

MacDailyNews Take: Note to Cablevision marketing stooges: If you’d like it to appeal more to Mac users, call the Mac version “Mac to TV Media Relay.” Sheesh.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “TowerTone” for the heads up.]

24 Comments

  1. Internet content including streaming video sites and audio such as Internet radio

    Hey Cablevision, Boxee called to warn you that you may not get vary far with this one…

    The service will enable the customer to securely send information on their PC in real-time through Cablevision’s network facilities to a dedicated channel viewable only by that customer.

    Yes, there’s absolutely no possible way that your private photos will ever be spied upon or stolen by sending them to us in this way… at least not until the first celebrity has his or her pictures stolen and spread across the internet thanks to this service.

    The service will completely eliminate the need to change input settings on the TV,

    …completely eliminating any expectations of data privacy you would otherwise have along the way.

    MW: think

  2. DogGone — yes that is true. But cable companies are all about selling you a “Service” with a monthly fee to do something you can (or could previously) do w/o the service (or monthly fee). At least they can’t force this one on you like they (and all the other cable/satellite tv companies) are doing to kill the DVR.

    The cable (and verizon, directtv, etc) have wanted to kill the DVR (and the VCR before that) for a long time, and now they successfully have by encrypting the digital TV signals. Now, if you want an HD DVR, you must RENT it from your provider. Comcast will give you a box to provide an RF SD (read — NOT HD, and not even S-video, but RF) ANALOG signal on channel three to your old-school VCR, or non-HD DVR. Of course, you can’t even use your device’s built-in tuner to select the channel to record from, you need to use the remote for the comcast box — so this still substantially reduces the usefulness of your DVR, even if you’re willing to settle for the crappy picture provided on the SD analog signal.

  3. This will work for “grand pappy and grand maw” but for anyone else

    “The service will completely eliminate the need to change input settings on the TV,”

    THAT is not a big deal…

  4. This is most likely an unauthorized “leak” of talks/collaboration between Cablevision & Apple with regard to the development of up-and-coming AppleTV technology.

    Just a hunch…

  5. Technogeekdom is likely unable to get the convenience of this. If properly marketed, this will make it so much easier for ordinary folk to watch their downloads on TV. I have three Macs at home, and a HDTV. I even have plenty of media on these Macs that I would like to watch on that HDTV. I only hooked my MBP once to this HDTV, to test it (it worked flawlessly). It is just a major hassle. None of my Macs are located near the TV (iMac’s in the bedroom, two ‘books are on end tables by the sofa). It’s just too much of a hassle to get the necessary cables, get up and hook up the laptop to the TV (and audio to the receiver) in order to watch any of this stuff. If I had a solution such as the one in this story, I’d be watching a lot more home-made media.

    If Apple had made anything like this, it would take off big time. Since it is a cable operator, I’m not sure how well executed it will be. The concept itself is actually great, though.

  6. Hi
    it’s amazen to see something like this envolve, I wonder they they came up with this concept. Apple tv. Works with HD already, accesses your computer through a wireless network
    (even though cablevision doesn’t support routers) you might even save money on paying for your bill by going through iTunes best of all. Best of all, buy Apple tv and have evrything right now.. Great ideas are hard to think of today….

  7. WTF!?

    I just connect a cable like DogDone says and hit a button on the Remote to change the input source. “Specific examples of the kind of content that” I can “currently view on” my TV: <u>anything and everything</u>.

  8. Not sure how/why all of you are so offended or confused by this. It sounds like they’re just using their software to set up a screen-sharing connection between your cable box and your computer…much as we can already do between computers. The cable box IS a computer, after all.

    Eliminates having to plug it in. Put your computer in your lap and mirror the screen on the TV. Seems pretty simple and easy. Run the client software on your system and turn to channel 389. Done.

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