AOL-TW silver in GoldPocket

Interactive TV co. to provide service for conglom's cable portfolio

AOL Time Warner has invested $5 million in GoldPocket Interactive, a Massachusetts-based interactive TV technology developer that the media conglom plans to use to beef up its television offerings.

The funds came out of subsid AOL Time Warner Investments and becomes GoldPocket’s third round of financing after raising $55 million over the past 14 months from Frank Biondi’s Waterview Advisors, Allen & Co., Barrington Partners and East River Ventures.

For a small player competing against other interactive TV developers in what has become a crowded marketplace, the AOL Time Warner deal is a coup for the company in terms of the millions of subscribers to which its software technology will now be deployed.

Under terms of the new relationship, which has been in the works for months, GoldPocket will develop interactive entertainment technologies for AOL Time Warner’s future set-top boxes and AOLTV, among other systems. The technology will be applied to the company’s shows on its portfolio of TV channels, including the WB, TBS Superstation, CNN, Showtime and HBO.

What it does

Company’s EventMatrix system allows millions of people to simultaneously interact with each other and with TV content using real-time, peer-to-peer technology. Using the software, auds can directly affect live or syndicated programming by providing real-time feedback.

GoldPocket already provides HBO and TBS Superstation with interactive programming via its EventMatrix software. The interactive component of HBO’s new weekly sports magazine show “On the Record With Bob Costas” bowed Feb. 14.

Auds engage in on-air discussions by posing questions to guests, responding to real-time polls, chatting with one another in the show’s dedicated chatrooms and playing a sports trivia game.

TBS’ “Dinner and a Movie” allows at-home viewers to play a variety of film- and cooking-based trivia and logic games, respond to live polls, view the night’s recipe, submit recipe titles and chat with other viewers across the country.

Privately held GoldPocket, based out of Medford, Mass., was founded in 1999 and employees 65. It operates a Los Angeles office as well for its entertainment endeavors.

“The real focus is around being able to push interactive television to the next level,” said Scott Newman, prexy of GoldPocket Interactive. “It is a huge step forward in the mass adoption of interactive television offerings, and we’re honored to have the support of AOL Time Warner to take our technology to the next level.”

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