Gracenote hints at CES announcements

Gracenote Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Ty Roberts hints at the company's upcoming CES announcements, including enhanced music-streaming capabilities for the TV.

Photo of panel at 2010 SF Music Tech Summit.
Gracenote Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Ty Roberts speaks at the 2010 SF Music Tech Summit. Donald Bell/CNET

Today at San Francisco's annual Music Tech Summit, Gracenote Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Ty Roberts hinted at a few announcements the company will make at CES 2011.

Speaking on a panel that tackled the subject of "connected devices," Ty mentioned that Gracenote (a division of Sony) is gearing up to unveil a service for delivering streaming mood-based music playlists to connected devices such as TVs, along with accompanying artist photos and album art.

Apart from the "mood-based" angle, the combination of streaming music and artist images sounds similar to Microsoft's Zune offering now available on Xbox 360. (a property of CNET parent company CBS) also has a conceptually similar photo montage music visualizer for its streaming radio Web-based player.

This isn't Gracenote's first stab at delivering intelligent playlists to consumers. Two years ago, it announced its in-car system for mood and location-aware playlists. Gracenote's parent company, Sony, has also used the playlist technology recently for its line of Walkman media players, music phones, and the PSP.

While Gracenote's playlist technology is most famous for working behind the scenes in products like Apple's iTunes, the leap into the realm of Internet-connected TVs may help the company step into the spotlight. On the other hand, with Sony at the helm, the as-yet-unveiled service may be limited to Sony's own sets and devices.

Ty also made a telling CES prediction, stating that he expects to see a number of services using the iPad to react to your TV with augmented content to enhance the television viewing experience. With CES only five weeks away, we won't need to wait long to see if he's right.

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