Interactive TV to arrive under Open ... banner

British Interactive Broadcasting will launch to consumers next spring under the banner of Open ... and has lined up Coca-Cola, Ford and Unilever as the first advertisers to run interactive TV ads on the service.

British Interactive Broadcasting will launch to consumers next

spring under the banner of Open ... and has lined up Coca-Cola, Ford and

Unilever as the first advertisers to run interactive TV ads on the

service.



Open ... will offer digital TV viewers a range of interactive services

such as shopping, banking, e-mail and interactive games and will be

trailed to viewers from December. The first interactive services will be

available to Sky Digital customers in the spring and Open ... will be

fully operational by the autumn, when the marketing launch begins.



Coke, Ford and Unilever have developed interactive ads which will run on

Open ... Branded sites will be cross-linked with existing TV ads and

will allow viewers to see more information about a product, order a

brochure or sample and even make a purchase within seconds of seeing the

product advertised.



According to Edwin Sharpe, Unilever’s UK media manager, Unilever is

committed to BIB’s interactive developments ’and to the wider

opportunities of customer relationships created in this

environment’.



Open ... has also announced a raft of partners to provide interactive

services on the Open ... platform. Great Universal Stores, Iceland,

Midland Bank, a new BT e-mail system called Talk 21, the computer games

company, Visionik, and Woolworths will all be available through

Open ...



GUS will offer interactive home shopping for sports and leisurewear as

well as foot-wear brands such as Adidas, Nike, Reebok and

Timberland.



Iceland, currently the only UK food retailer to offer nationwide home

delivery, will provide the first home grocery shopping service, while

Woolworths will offer music, video and computer games.



Midland Bank will introduce home banking and interactive financial

services, allowing consumers to check bank statements, change standing

orders and pay bills.



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