Our engineering team was impressed by OpenTV and Pixel's technology expertise and understanding of our customer needs while passing our stringent quality-assurance standards. Buzztime introduced a unique and captivating marketing method for educating the benefits of ITV entertainment to satellite TV retailers, and in turn, to consumers.
EchoStar Communications Corporation (NASDAQ: DISH) and its DISH Network™ satellite TV service named three interactive TV (ITV) content and software developers ITV Providers of the Year for DISH Network in 2004: OpenTV Corp., (Nasdaq: OPTV), Pixel, and Buzztime Entertainment, Inc, a subsidiary of NTN Communications, Inc., (AMEX: NTN). EchoStar executives made the announcement at the annual DISH Network ITV Summit held at its Englewood, Colo., headquarters on March 4 for more than 100 current and prospective media providers and ITV software developers.
"OpenTV, Pixel and Buzztime have demonstrated exceptional commitment to quality and professionalism in their design, integration, launch and commercial service," said Scott Higgins, director of Interactive TV Programming at EchoStar. "Our engineering team was impressed by OpenTV and Pixel's technology expertise and understanding of our customer needs while passing our stringent quality-assurance standards. Buzztime introduced a unique and captivating marketing method for educating the benefits of ITV entertainment to satellite TV retailers, and in turn, to consumers."
DISH Network offers more than 20 ITV channels, including games, sports, news, shopping, children's programs, customer support and entertainment. DISH Network's ITV programmers were judged on timeliness in completing the channel, the impact of the channel for customers, quality assurance, originality, and for one award, marketing effectiveness.
OpenTV, a software development leader in the ITV industry, received the 2004 Developer of the Year Award. In addition to providing the software platform for a majority of DISH Network satellite receivers, OpenTV also delivered a number of interactive software applications throughout the year. OpenTV's software enables a wide array of functionality, including enhanced TV, games, interactive shopping, interactive and addressable advertising, and gaming.
Pixel, a leader in cross-platform game services, received the 2004 Game Developer of the Year Award for the second year in a row. DISH Network offers Pixel's KidsWise™, America's first fully interactive TV channel exclusively for young children that brings fun and learning to TV.
Buzztime, a multiplayer ITV game company, received the 2004 Marketing Award. Buzztime is a major producer of trivia game shows and multiplayer ITV games played by millions each month in restaurants and sports bars, on the NTN ITV Network, on major wireless carriers and with retail games sold in major toy stores.
DISH Network provides the most ITV channels in the United States and is the world leader in the number of ITV-enabled homes with more than 10 million.
About EchoStar Communications Corporation
EchoStar Communications Corporation (NASDAQ: DISH) serves more than 11 million satellite TV customers through its DISH Network, the fastest growing U.S. provider of advanced digital television services in the last five years. DISH Network offers hundreds of video and audio channels, Interactive TV, HDTV, sports and international programming, together with professional installation and 24-hour customer service. DISH Network ranks No. 1 in Customer Satisfaction among Cable/Satellite TV Subscribers by J.D. Power and Associates. Visit EchoStar's DISH Network at www.dishnetwork.com or call 1-800-333-DISH (3474).
OpenTV is one of the world's leading interactive television companies. Deployed in approximately 47 million digital set-top-boxes in 96 countries, the company's software enables a wide array of functionality, including enhanced television, a full-featured IPTV solution, interactive shopping, interactive and addressable advertising, games and gaming, personal video recording, and a variety of consumer care and communication applications. For more information, please visit www.opentv.com.
About Pixel Technologies
Pixel is the leading provider of interactive games and technologies for emerging platforms including interactive television, broadband internet and mobile entertainment. Already reaching over 15 million ITV households, Pixel develops and publishes games through exclusive licensing agreements with the world's top brands. The company's portfolio of patented technologies, including the JIVE[TM] full-function multiplayer suite which enables cross-platform play, allows leading carriers around the world to deliver innovative, profitable games and game services to their consumers. In 2003, Pixel was named "EchoStar Developer of the Year" and is recognized as a Mobility Preferred Partner by Microsoft, which presented Pixel with their "Entertainment Application Developer of the Year" Award.
About Buzztime Entertainment
Buzztime Entertainment, Inc., a subsidiary of NTN Communications, Inc. (AMEX: NTN), is the developer and distributor of Play-Along Television™ technology and programming. Buzztime Entertainment, Inc. develops Buzztime®, the Play-Along Television community for multiplayer games and competitions on digital cable featuring six channels of trivia games for players of all interests and ability levels. Buzztime's trivia and play-along sports games have been available to millions of players in restaurants and sports bars via the NTN iTV Network for almost 20 years. The company owns one of the world's largest databases of iTV trivia and operates an interactive broadcast studio where it produces multiplayer trivia game shows, live sports prediction games - such as QB1® Predict the Play® football - popular arcade and classic games across iTV, mobile and PC platforms. Buzztime Entertainment has agreements with Media General, Inc., EchoStar, Liberate Technologies, ICTV, Cadaco, Airborne Entertainment, DTI and the National Football League. Buzztime Entertainment, Inc.'s interactive television studio and broadcast operations center are headquartered in Carlsbad, California. The company website is located at www.buzztime.com.