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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

TV Dinner: TiVo Orders Your Pizza!

TiVo now has an added function: it can order Domino's Pizza!

As of Monday (November 17th - when this post was written), broadband-connected TiVo subscribers can order Domino's Pizza - and even track their order - via their set! You have the option of ordering a pie for pick-up but... that kind of defeats the purpose doesn't it?

According to the press release, TiVo subscribers will see an ad for Domino's Pizza on their TV and can click "I Want It!" from their remote. The option will be available through a myriad of navigational paths in the TiVo interface and is free of charge (though you got to pay cash for the food!).

TiVo also offers similar interactive advertisements from Amazon and Fandango.

This is what I was discussing here a while back and have talked about for years! You should be able to use your remote to navigate through the products featured on the show you are watching - clothes, furniture, accessories, vehicles - and click to learn more about, even purchase, them. This would be particularly useful for featured music: imagine being able to learn the name of a song used in a commercial or TV program, then click to purchase it from iTunes, or watch the video.

Eventually, this will lead to similar interactive features, such as learning the backstory or significance of a character or object in a like manner. For example, you could highlight Ruby while watching Supernatural and click to get pop-ups detailing her character's history. Clicking-through on "more information," you would get a list of other episodes in which the character appeared, details about the actresses (such as the fact that Ruby has been portrayed by two actresses, so far), and more. Eventually, the data would become even more contextual - like hyperlinks on the Web - allowing you to follow highlighted material for in-depth facts, including video/audio and more.

When these features are finally integrated, your TV-viewing experience will be similar to watching a DVD, where you can basically pause the show in-media-res and "jump" to the extras, then fall right back into the program where you left-off. This "background" material will be created in and of itself by the creators and companies, including "proprietary" material developed by the provider.

FOX is a perfect example:

While watching Prison Break, you click on the jail and a child window pops-up with information about the setting in the TV show. You can either follow highlighted keywords (subjects) within the text for more information or choose from an accompanying contextual menu. One item would be an interview with the stars; another leads to an episode of the FMC original series, Life After Film School, featuring one (or more) of the creators; another leads to some FNC special on prisons; on and on. And all of this is just the material Fox offers - TiVo has a few features it made on its own, as does your programming provider, and so on.

Kudos, TiVo and Domino's Pizza!

© C Harris Lynn, 2008

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