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Profile: Steve Schein

Apr 16, 2001  •  Post A Comment

Title: Chief strategic officer and senior vice president of Mixed Signals Technologies, a leading company in advanced interactive television technologies, services and content development.
Background: Before joining Mixed Signals in March, Mr. Schein was senior vice president of corporate development and strategic planning at Intertainer, an entertainment-on-demand broadband network.
ITV today: “There’s an awareness at companies, whether it’s an advertiser, an ad agency or a content originator, that they need to do something in interactive television. And that’s where it all starts. They’re willing to commit some dollars to their interactive television initiatives. I still believe we’re a couple years away from the business of interactive television being a real business, but we’re definitely at the start of the hockey stick. You’ll continue to see expanded trials, the number of enabled devices in the home increase, and the business models get worked on to the point of satisfaction for the network operators and the content originators-who are the key part in the ITV pie.”
ITV benefits: “Consumers enjoy utility. They’re willing to pay for it if it adds value and enhances their lives. We had trouble proving the added value of an electronic program guide to cable operators and television manufacturers. Over time … everyone understood the importance of the electronic program guide. It serves a purpose. And in the same way, ITV needs to add utility above and beyond what [consumers] can already get.”
Mixed Signals: “It’s true that we have creative services and programming capabilities to create an experience for an interactive television program or advertisement.
“But to get it from someone’s PC down to somebody’s set-top box or whatever the platform is, there is a host of enabling technologies that the company is going to make core to its strategy going forward. We’re going to feature them, and we’re going to package and sell them to anybody getting involved in interactive television. So while it’s nice to be known as the company that does `Wheel of Fortune’ and `Jeopardy!’ our real intent is to become an enabling-tools provider for interactive television.”