3 Screen Solutions (3SS), a provider of software platforms for set-top boxes (STB) and multiscreen entertainment, and Skyworth Digital, a manufacturer of connected home products and solutions, announced that they have integrated their technologies to create a new STB platform optimized to enable faster Android TV service launches with world-class viewing experiences.
The Skyworth HP40A STB with embedded Amlogic chipset and middleware are now pre-integrated with 3SS’ 3READY Custom Launcher to create an end-to-end Android TV solution. The partners’ fundamental aims for this pre-integration are to help operators more rapidly and easily secure Netflix certification and "to smooth the journey to becoming a super-aggregator."
Skyworth is a leading partner in the Netflix Scaling Program, which Netflix created to help OEMs including STB providers to obtain technical pre-certification. By choosing Netflix-ready hardware, the company notes an operator’s Netflix certification can be fast-tracked, and the process of reaching commercial agreement with Netflix can potentially be eased. With these Netflix compliance elements in place early, operators have the opportunity to accelerate the introduction of their new Android TV services to the marketplace.
In parallel, as part of multiple Android TV deployments, 3SS’ 3READY Custom Launcher – at the heart of the 3READY product framework, now driving the UX in more than 10 million homes – has successfully received Netflix UI certification.
“With Skyworth’s and 3SS’ hardware+middleware+launcher pre-certified platform combination, Netflix, the aspiring operator, and ultimately subscribers, can all be confident of a high-quality experience including Netflix viewing,” comments Srithar Bala, Head of Video Solutions & Services, Skyworth Digital.
Notably, with 3READY Control Center, the Netflix launch points – namely, the locations within the UX where Netflix is to appear – can be configured to align with the specific terms of the operator’s Netflix agreement. This can further shorten time to market.
The companies note that access to Netflix is one of the pre-eminent drivers behind the growing popularity of the Android TV solution among service providers, as is the shift to super-aggregation. As the scale of a super-aggregator’s reach grows, however, particular attention and management is needed to ensure that all subscribers get a seamless experience on an ever-increasing population of devices – an assurance and high standard that Netflix strongly insists on.
With the Skyworth+3READY-pre-integrated reference hybrid STB hardware platform, operators can get to certification more quickly, and 3SS’ Android TV-centric custom launcher is ready for the operator to tailor and brand for their DVB-S, -T, -C, IPTV and/or OTT services. “With certification by Google, Netflix and other content partners all taken care of even before unboxing, operators can get a significant head-start as they plan and launch their Android TV products,” Bala adds.
Skyworth and 3SS are collaborating to deliver a hybrid Android TV project for an as-yet-undisclosed European operator which will launch soon.
“Through pre-integration, by choosing the Skyworth+3SS platform, service providers can benefit from a proven solution, and earlier service launches with minimized technical integration cost and risk,” says Kai-Christian Borchers, 3SS Managing Director. “The service launch process is further accelerated by Netflix and other pre-certifications. The result is that operators can differentiate earlier, and start earning revenues faster, with their next-gen Android TV offerings,” he concludes.