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Walt Disney travel channel goes interactive


18 May, 2007: Walt Disney Company is launching a new interactive video-on-demand (VOD) channel featuring travel-related programming.

The new service will make it possible for aspiring travelers to communicate with the staff of the reservations department at Disney theme parks.

In other words, some cable television customers could soon be able to book a trip to a Disney theme park with the click of their TV remote control.

The Disney Travel on Demand service will start in the third week of May 2007 on Time Warner Cable systems, followed by providing the service to subscribers of Cablevision digital a week later.

The channel will include original programmes, including reality shows, episodic programs, concerts and special events highlighting Disney’s domestic theme parks in Florida and California, the United States, as well as its adventure-travel business.

The shows, offered free to viewers, would have interactive features, including the ability to request more information using buttons on the TV remote control.

The programs will reach over 9 million people across the United States.

Though the deals with Time Warner and Cablevision are structured differently, Disney will create the programming and pay the cable companies to telecast it, according to a statement from Walt Disney Company.

On Time Warner systems, viewers can use their remote control to request brochures, DVDs and other information either through the mail or e-mail.

Cablevision subscribers can use a remote control to trigger a phone call from a Disney travel representative within 15 minutes.

Walt Disney Company had tested the channel on Cablevision’s system in 2006. Both companies were able to monitor which programmes people watched, whether viewers fast-forwarded through some parts, and what parts received repeat viewing.

The test helped Walt Disney Company develop the shows that will start on May 21 on Time Warner systems, and on May 29 on Cablevision.





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