Wireless Systems Design

TV Becomes Mobile And Interactive

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When ideas began to surface about bringing gaming to wireless devices, the dream was to make it interactive. Now that gaming has taken its initial steps into the market, the new goal is to bring in television for that same purpose. By making "America's favorite past-time" mobile, advertisers and content providers could create interactive games, contests, and promotional opportunities for consumers. The result would beef up handset sales, while opening up new programming and revenue opportunities.

Work is already being done to make mobile TV a reality. In one example, VEILInteractive Technologies (www.veilinteractive.com) has been co-developing a VEIL-enabled secure-digital input output (SDIO) card for interactive television with X-traFun, Inc. (www.x-trafun.com). X-traFun is designing the architecture for an optical VEIL decoding SDIO card for PDAs and mobile devices. With this international expansion card, users will be able to interact with any television broadcasts encoded with VEIL data.

VEIL is actually an encoded data stream in the video picture. It remains invisible to the human eye. It can be received by a portable device wherever an encoded broadcast or video can be seen. The optical VEIL platform promises to deliver text-based data at speeds that are compatible with display technologies on handheld devices. Optical VEIL's transmission method works with all broadcast standards (NTSC, PAL, and SECAM).

This co-development effort relies heavily on X-traFun's Game Boy experience. Already, X-traFun made it possible for users to access the Internet using Nintendo's Game Boy Advance console.To make interactive television a reality, VEIL's secure-digital I/O card is serving as an enhancement to X-traFun's cartridge. It will link Game Boy Advance to television content. In just one resulting application, users should be able to receive new Game Boy games and enhancements directly from encoded programming airing on television.

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