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Siemens To Unveil Communication System For TVs

The German giant Siemens plans to showcase in March a new system for communicating via television, including instant messaging, chat rooms and push-to-talk functionality.
The German giant Siemens plans to showcase in March a new system for communicating via television.

Called COSE (an acronym from "Communication Services on TV" in German), the system enables two TV viewers to communicate with each other using instant messages and "chat room" functionality, as well as cell-phone style push-to-talk. Users can also send pictures. It can also be used by television studios to facilitate interactive programming -- sending out questions to the audience, for example, to which viewers may respond.

The system is designed to be built into set-top boxes, such as cable boxes or TiVo-like digital video recorders.

The company envisions the creation of "buddy lists" that could be set up by users, and also "communities" that users could join -- for example, communities of fans around a specific TV show.

Siemens is not expected to demonstrate a shipping version of COSE as a product, but rather showcase technology it is still working on.

Siemens plans to showcase COSE at the CeBIT technology fair in Hannover, Germany, March 9 - 15.