In the convergence of broadcast and broadband, enabling the search and discovery of programming will be critical. The new Miniweb interactive television platform will now integrate the blinkx video search engine. It will allow viewers to search and discover both broadcast television and broadband video from multiple sources indexed by blinkx using Miniweb-enabled, broadband-connected devices.

Miniweb is already available in more than nine million homes across the United Kingdom, by virtue of being on the Sky platform, and currently supports over 600 interactive television sites. The sophisticated search and recommendation capabilities for internet video enabled by blinkx will now be part of the Miniweb broadband television experience.

This will not initially be available on the Sky platform, at least until such time as it is broadband enabled. However, it positions both companies to offer their technologies for the emerging market for hybrid broadcast and broadband enabled devices.

“Combining broadcast and broadband TV will provide audiences with access to an incredibly rich and diverse universe of video content,” said Suranga Chandratillake, the founder and chief executive of blinkx. “As the leader in video search, blinkx is ideally suited to help viewers navigate this universe, both through search and through recommendations.”

The blinkx search engine current indexes over 35 million hours of online audio and video. The company is based in San Francisco and London and listed on the London alternative investment market. It was spun out of the search technology company Autonomy.

The personalisation of television is a major trend that is currently being explored throughout the industry, from the content owner through to the device manufacturer. Miniweb aims to address both business and consumer needs for the delivery of internet video to television devices.

“We’re seeing great interest in our platform from network operators, content owners and manufacturers as it helps them deliver and manage the convergence of traditional broadcast programming with internet delivered video content,” said Andrew Carver, the chief executive of Miniweb. “This is a very attractive proposition for viewers, allowing them to enjoy additional entertainment on the TV rather than a PC.”

“Combining two best of breed technologies into a single TV services platform is definitely a case of the total consumer benefit being more than just the sum of the parts,” added Ian Valentine, the founder and chief architect at Miniweb Interactive, who pioneered browser-based technology used on the Sky interactive television platform.