Long before Macrovision bought TV Guide (formerly Gemstar) and change its name to Rovi, we've been seeing guide demos that are worth getting excited about. But after years and years of the same old crap from big cable, all the excitement is dashed instantly as we realize we'll never see 'em deployed. We'd love to believe that the new TotalGuide for Service Providers announced this week at The Cable Show would change all that, you know with its slick looking user interface and unified search -- which appears to be a better implementation than TiVo's. If the screen shot above looks familiar it's because it looks similar to the TotalGuide for CE (used to be codenamed Liquid) that is currently available to CE manufacturers. More pictures and screen shot after the jump.

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Rovi Unveils Search and Discovery Platform for the Cable Industry: TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers
Advanced Media Guide Merges Linear TV, DVR and On Demand Content with Rich Entertainment Metadata


LOS ANGELES, May 10, 2010 – Today at The Cable Show in Los Angeles, Calif., Rovi Corporation (NASDAQ: ROVI) unveiled its TotalGuide™ Solution for Service Providers, an advanced flexible media guide for cable platforms. Rovi TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers uses in-depth entertainment data from Rovi to power search, browse and recommendation capabilities. The media guide streamlines the access to linear TV, digital video recorded (DVR) video on demand (VOD) content through one user interface, as well as enables service providers to seamlessly integrate broadband and personal content as they are being implemented in next generation service provider offerings.

"Television viewing options have changed dramatically with DVRs, VOD and over-the-top content, and service providers need a next-generation guide to make sure consumers can fully take advantage of these improvements," said Ian Olgeirson, senior analyst with SNL Kagan. "Providing a clear and engaging roadmap to programming options is increasingly critical to the industry's ability to maintain its value proposition amid increased competition."
TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers Features

Multiple Content Options; One User Interface. Broadening the subscriber's viewing options, Rovi TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers enables convenient single search access to linear, DVR, VOD and Internet based content selected by the service provider. By simplifying the access to the variety of content sources, service providers are able to highlight the value of their content platform, thereby strengthening the relationship with their subscribers in an increasingly competitive market. The guide also offers the flexibility to add links to consumers' personal media libraries as well as expand the user experience beyond the TV and into other devices.

Recommendations and "Six-Degree" Discovery. Rovi TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers utilizes in-depth entertainment metadata from Rovi, including TV show and movie summaries and reviews; movie poster art; celebrity photos; biographies; and sophisticated relational data to simplify the navigation process within the guide. Rovi TotalGuide Solution provides continuous recommendations for fresh, new content based on the tastes and preferences revealed in a viewer's search history, social recommendations, new releases and editorial reviews. In addition, viewers are able to browse and jump from one piece of content to another using relational data, such as cast and credits details – what Rovi calls "six-degree" discovery.

Open and Flexible Architecture. Rovi TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers is a flexible solution, based on an open architecture that service providers can use to customize content for subscribers and enhance their brand image.
Interactive Advertising. The new world of advertising is becoming interactive content rich. Rovi TotalGuide Solution for Service Provider has the ability to serve targeted, visually rich ads designed to be able to drive viewership and revenue generating transactions for service providers.
"The world of home entertainment is undergoing a major transition. No longer the only source of entertainment in the home, the TV now competes with several alternative platforms, most notably the Internet, which continues to grow as a major destination for on-demand and over-the-top video content. As the landscape shifts, cable operators must find new and relevant ways to engage their subscribers and drive greater value," said Corey Ferengul, executive vice president, product management and marketing at Rovi. "Recognizing this, we will be offering our ground-breaking TotalGuide platform to cable operators so that they can differentiate their services and enhance how consumers connect to and navigate the cable experience."
Availability

TotalGuide Solution for Service Providers is planned to be available to service providers next year.

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Rovi introduces latest cable guide that you'll never see