Advanced Television

Ex-Sony men fund hybrid

August 22, 2007

One of the most covert start-ups in Silicon Valley, codenamed Building B, has announced a round of funding. Building B is aiming to bring both television and other media content into your living room in competition with cable, satellite or IPTV services.

Building B announced a $17 million (E12.6m) round of funding by venture capital firms Morgenthaler Ventures, Index Ventures, Omni Capital and private investors. Andy Lack, the chairman of Sony BMG Music Entertainment, is joining its board of directors. The 14 month-old company was started by longtime investor and entrepreneur Buno Pati and Phil Wiser, the former chief technology officer of Sony Corporation of America.

The company appears to be developing a hybrid service. It will receive the major channels in high-definition through wireless broadcasts. Since the small firm does not own any spectrum itself, one possibility is that Building B plans to lease digital

spectrum from local television stations. The Building B device will receive less popular content over a broadband Internet connection. “We see ourselves as delivering next generation of television without forcing consumers to walk over to the PC to get access to it” Wiser said.

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