Tribune, Digitalsmiths pitch MSOs solution for multiscreen program guides

Tribune Media Services and Digitalsmiths are teaming up to pitch cable operators technology that could make it easier to deliver TV listings and other data to cable subscribers using tablet computers and smartphones.

The companies said Tuesday that they are releasing a set of data-delivery APIs that will be built with Digitalsmith's Seamless Discovery platform.

"This is an API that allows you to slice and dice TMS data in very efficient and very nimble ways," Digitalsmiths CEO Ben Weinberger told FierceCable.

TMS, whose parent company publishes The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and other major newspapers, supplies TV listings data to several multichannel providers for use in their interactive program guides. Its customers include Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), Charter Communications (Nasdaq: CHTR), Cox Communications, Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH), DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV), Bresnan Communications and TiVo (Nasdaq: TIVO).

Most major pay-TV providers have built apps for Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPad and iPhone and mobile devices that run Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) Android platform.

The TMS-Digitalsmiths APIs could help developers at cable and satellite providers deploy new multiscreen guides, recommendation engines and applications that rely on Tribune metadata involving TV and movie listings and celebrities. The companies said that TMS metadata is integrated into Digitalsmith's Seamless Discovery product for providers that are mutual customers of the companies, and that the agreement will allow TMS to market the Seamless Discovery platform.

The companies plan to pitch the APIs to attendees at The Cable Show convention in Boston next week.

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