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Acer launches Alive digital content platform and app store, plans to pre-load it onto future machines

Acer launches Alive digital content platform and app store, plans to pre-load it onto future machines
Darren Murph
Darren Murph|November 23, 2010 1:53 PM
Acer's Global press event today focused primarily around its Clear.fi content sharing system and a slew of new hardware introductions, but there's one tidbit of software news that seems too significant to ignore. Here shortly, Acer will begin pre-loading its newfangled Alive digital content platform onto its machines. Hard to say if that includes tablets and smartphones (update: Acer has confirmed that it'll eventually hit "netbooks, laptops, smartphones and tablets), but the screens we're seeing today lead us to believe this is a desktop-only affair for now. Acer's playing this up as being "more than an app store," but there's no question that an app store lies at the heart. A cornucopia of partners (Intel, Zinio, Adobe, etc.) will be providing content, and newly pushed material can be easily viewed via Twitter or Acer's own Channel concept. Five main sections will be present: Listen, Watch, Read, Play and Application. Both free and paid content will be supported, with users in the UK and Italy getting first access next month. Mum's the word on how long it'll take to spread elsewhere (a more thorough rollout will "begin" in Q1 2011), and there's no mention at all about an SDK for developers. Something tells us this will end up as more of a collection of apps from various app stores than anything else, but at least we'll know for sure in just a couple weeks.
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Discover and enjoy digital content with the Acer Group

New York, November 23rd 2010 - alive is the brand-new platform for Acer Group customers to fulfill their daily needs for relevant digital content discovery and consumption, across all devices and across all operating systems.

It is a unique starting point for users, allowing them to browse, search, access, purchase, stream or download and play any type of digital content.

alive is much more than a traditional content store, as a large breadth of free and paid content is presented to users via real-time feeds directly managed by content providers. Content updates are as instant and discoverable as Twitter feeds, allowing users to be regularly notified when there's something new and interesting for them to discover.

alive is the Acer Group's next generation store where Content Providers can plug in and publish their content directly to Acer Group users, who will then find an extensive offer of both global and local content.

alive is personal. Users can fine tune their preferences and leverage a sophisticated recommendation system that shows content relevant to them. Instead of surfing across a myriad of web sites and online services to get what they want, alive will help users by proposing what they might find relevant.

Content discovery is enhanced via the innovative Channel concept: users can browse, select, subscribe and then follow all their favorite alive Channels, which are related to specific themes, like for example music artists, movie genres, top games, book authors, etc. Content Providers will be able to offer a vast array of Channels, finding new and innovative ways to present their content, differently from what they do via a web site or via a traditional service.

alive addresses five key usages to embrace the whole digital universe:
- in the Listen section alive will offer music, audiobooks, radios, podcasts and other types of audio entertainment content
- in the Watch area alive will provide movies, TV series, TV Channels, video podcasts and other types of short videos, like Music videos
- in the Read section alive will deliver e-books, e-magazines and e-newspapers as well as single news, articles and blogs
- in the Play area alive users will be able to find games of any kind
- in the Application section alive will offer all the most common application categories, like Business & Finance, Lifestyle & Leisure, Learning, Travel & Navigation, Productivity, etc.

alive is social. Users will be able to post and share reviews and comments about the content they like in one click thanks to a direct interface with all the most popular social networks in each geography.

Customers can keep all their content purchase history in their MyLibrary section and share them across different Acer Group devices.

The unique alive interface will be pre-installed on all new devices or will be downloadable online by existing Acer Group customers and it will offer a unique user experience customized by device type.

Purchase of premium content or subscription to premium channels will be easy and in one-click. Users only need to create a unique account on alive and register their credit card details only once.

Starting from the initial version available to selected users in UK and Italy in December, alive will then be rolled-out in the first quarter of 2011 and made available progressively across all Acer's consumer devices worldwide, including netbooks, notebooks, smartphones and tablets.


alive: enhancing the Acer Group consumer experience
through a wealth of trusted content

New York, November 23rd 2010 - Stemming from the desire to complete the circle of services and solutions offered by all Acer Group brands, alive is the brand-new platform that adds content, convergence and continuity to the Acer Group product mix.

alive lets users discover and enjoy a rich variety of digital content. But that's not all. alive provides them with content related to their personal interests, whether it's music, movies, books or games. Last but not least, as alive content is managed directly by content providers, it is instantly updated any time there is something new and relevant, allowing users to be constantly up to speed with their interests.

The purpose of alive is to enhance the ownership experience of Acer Group products through a rich and varied choice of content. alive offers content from a variety of trusted Content Providers, that are able to offer high quality content both globally and locally, ensuring the interests of users worldwide will be catered for irrespective of cultural and language differences. In this way, users will always find what is most relevant to them: whether it is the last blockbuster action movie or local news from their area.

This stunning Acer solution is the result of collaboration with key partners with extended and proven experience in their respective fields: Buongiorno, supporting the alive store backend, AKQA for the user experience, and Acxiom, who will work closely with Acer on the alive recommendation engine.

Starting from the initial version available to selected users in the UK and Italy in December, customers will find content published by several trusted Content Providers that stand out for their large and diversified selection.

This is only the beginning, as alive is open, active and dynamic, thus able to grow and adapt to better meet users' personal needs.

The list of content providers for alive include:

7 Digital: gives alive customers access to the largest licensed MP3 catalogue in the world available across 100 alive channels, including soundtracks, best of pop and more.

Acetrax: with over 2,000 titles available from top Hollywood studios to Rent or Buy, to stream or download.

Adnkronos provides alive users with breaking news and real-time up-to-date videos and pictures about Italy and World's main facts and events, along with reports about Health, Labor, the Environment and the Arts.

AudioGo: offers a wide range of audio books, ranging from comedy shows, dramas and factual programs from the BBC radio, to complete readings of best-selling fiction and non-fiction. Initially, the high quality content will be available across 16 channels.

Audiotube syndicates over 8,000 high quality independent music videos via the alive platform. Audiotube's music pedigree, enhanced by its partnership with Dolby, will enable alive consumers to experience exceptional audio and video quality and sets a new industry standard.

Casual Games, a global game supplier, makes thousands of casual games from the most talented games developers available through the Acer platform. The games will be available in several channels to cater for different consumer tastes.

eBooks Thousands of ebooks and top new publications will be available from leading UK and Italian book publishing houses through a leading European supplier of eReading technology solutions, there will be tens of ebook channels hosting thousand of ebooks.

Gruppo Espresso will provide "La Repubblica", a leading Italian national newspaper, in a multimedia edition with photo galleries and videos, including all local editions and weekly attachments.

Muzu provides alive users with free access to 10,000 music videos from a broad range of the Biggest and Best Artists, catering for all music tastes. Muzu will launch with 10 Channels including The Official Top 40 and Artist Of The Week.

Zinio for beautiful photography, in-depth reporting and reliable quality reading, Zinio offers, the most popular magazine titles from around the world, all through alive.

ADOBE alive will be one of the storefronts for Adobe InMarket, delivering thousands of Adobe AIR® applications to consumers.

INTEL Intel provides alive with compelling applications coming from their Intel AppUpSM center.