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Schematic to Develop Prototype iTV Application for Windows Media Center for Windows Vista, Showtime Networks.

LAS VEGAS -- Interactive Agency First to Show Demonstration Application for Platform, Shaping Development Toolkit for Next-Generation Windows Media Center for Windows Vista

Schematic, a full-service interactive agency, today unveiled a prototype interactive television (iTV) application for Microsoft's forthcoming Windows Media Center platform for Windows Vista. The demo, which features content from the SHOWTIME(R) hit series "Weeds," is the first public showcase of third-party services for the powerful next-generation Windows Media Center and will be on display in the Microsoft booth (#SL1161) at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Expo 2006, April 24-27 in Las Vegas.

"There are already more than 10 million Media Center PCs in homes today, and the number is expected to grow tremendously as the release of Windows Vista brings new ways for consumers to enjoy their digital entertainment," said Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president of the Entertainment and Devices eHome Division at Microsoft Corp. "Schematic has made use of its expertise in developing for the Media Center Edition platform to help us deliver an enriched TV experience for consumers as part of the next-generation of Media Center."

Schematic collaborated with SHOWTIME and Microsoft to develop SHOWTIME's vision for the iTV prototype. Schematic then designed the User Interface (UI) and developed the demo to showcase the powerful capabilities in Windows Media Center for Windows Vista. The result is a dynamic, user-friendly channel, which includes a number of interactive features such as cast interviews, episode guides, and a direct connection to the Media Center digital video recording feature. Users can access and view exciting new content and information through an intuitive interface, all without affecting the HD playback of the show they are already watching.

"SHOWTIME has always been at the forefront of interactive television. Working with Microsoft on the Windows Media Center platform for Windows Vista reinforces our leadership position in developing new applications that enhance the television viewing experience," said Rob Hayes, senior vice president, SHOWTIME New Media. "The prototype developed by Schematic is in fact a working version of how we hope to present our content to viewers in the not-so distant future," Hayes concluded.

"In working with Microsoft and SHOWTIME, we had an opportunity to showcase an amazing new medium, harness top-tier technology and combine it with some of the most compelling content in the industry, to deliver the next-generation television experience," said Trevor Kaufman, CEO, Schematic. "Schematic is dedicated to improving all of the touch points between a brand owner and their customers. We pride ourselves on our mastery of not only creating a compelling user experience on existing platforms, but staying ahead of the curve and developing for the emerging mediums as well."

Schematic leveraged its expertise, having already designed and deployed more projects for the current Windows XP Media Center Edition than any other developer, to create the next-generation demo for the NAB 2006. By taking advantage of Microsoft Windows Media Center Presentation Layer with Media Center Markup Language and the Microsoft .NET Framework, Schematic designers and developers were able to create dynamic animations, transitions and graphics overlaying video for a more robust and engaging viewing experience.

About Showtime Networks Inc.

Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of CBS Corporation, owns and operates the premium television networks SHOWTIME(R), THE MOVIE CHANNEL(TM) and FLIX(R), as well as the multiplex channels SHOWTIME(R) TOO(TM), SHOWTIME(R) SHOWCASE, SHOWTIME EXTREME(R), SHOWTIME BEYOND(R), SHOWTIME NEXT(R), SHOWTIME WOMEN(R), SHOWTIME FAMILYZONE(R) and TMC XTRA. SNI also offers SHOWTIME HD(R), THE MOVIE CHANNEL HD(TM), SHOWTIME ON DEMAND(TM) and THE MOVIE CHANNEL ON DEMAND(TM). SNI is also an owner and manager of SUNDANCE CHANNEL, a venture of NBC Universal, Robert Redford and SNI. All SNI feeds provide enhanced sound using Dolby Digital 5.1. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME(R) PPV. Additionally, the advertiser-supported television network SHOWTIME is available in Turkey through a joint venture with UK-based Zone Vision.

About Schematic

Schematic is a full service interactive agency. Headquartered in Los Angeles with offices in New York, the firm provides user interface, design and technology solutions for the Web, advanced devices and television. Schematic serves clients in multiple industry verticals and develops across a wide array of platforms, including set-top boxes, game consoles, mobile devices, and the Internet.

Schematic's clients range from Fortune 500 consumer brands to worldwide media conglomerates including Microsoft, Accenture, Intel, Yahoo!, Turner, Discovery, Sony, CBS, Sci Fi Channel, Panasonic, Cablevision, Comcast, Starz, Bravo, PBS, CNN.com, Fox, Amp'd, MTV, AOL, BMW, Target, The Weather Channel, Pfizer, NFL Network, and others. For more information, please visit www.schematic.com.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
COPYRIGHT 2006 Business Wire
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 24, 2006
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