I've had an e-mail dangling in my inbox since last week that I've been meaning to come back to. It's a reminder of how the ecosystem around Microsoft media technologies is in full bloom and how, if some of the other media platform providers don't do something about their ecosystems, we could be facing a monoculture that's far bigger than the one we have with PCs. In this case, the news comes from SmartVideo Technologies that describes itself as follows:
SmartVideo Technologies offers the first and best-in-class services for broadcasting live, on-demand and download-and-play television content for mobile video consumers around the world. SmartVideo's television solutions deliver sharp video images with fully synced audio for broadcast to video-enabled cell phones and other handheld devices, via current and next-generation cellular and Wi-Fi systems.
The news had to do with the introduction of Two-Minute TV to the lineup of video content offerings that the company is delivering to handsets. Says the press release:
SmartVideo Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB: SMVD.OB) announced today that short form video series from Two Minute Television Network will be available to anyone with a smartphone or PDA equipped with a media player. The free, ad-supported entertainment channel will put series such as Genius on a Shoestring; the first two-minute reality series, Adventures in Speed Dating; and News with a Punchline - in the palm of their hand.
OK, so maybe you're thinking "Who the heck cares about a two-minute reality series?" That's not the point. The point is that this company's content lineup is expanding by leaps and bounds. Barely a week goes by without another addition to its content lineup. The week before this press release was issued, another one came out that announced the distribution of stand-up routines from the various Rascals Comedy Clubs. Still not impressed, here's a partial list of content deals that SmartVideo has: ABC News, MSNBC, CNBC, Fox Sports, E! Entertainment, IFILM, and The Weather Channel. What does this have to do with Microsoft's media juggernaut? Check out SmartVideo's home page. The company is a Windows Media Service Provider.