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Can't believe this isn't already done (or even 'kneaded' somewhere already on halfbakery.com) but how about using up the spare coloured buttons on digital TV remote controls as FastText-style 'jump' buttons for related digital TV channels? In the UK, with SkyTV at least, only the RED button is actually
'live' during TV broadcasts.
There is a growing trend for terrestrial TV programmes to either continue on a non-terrestrial channel (sport, news coverage etc.) or for the next episode of a terrestrial drama serial to be premiered on a digital channel directly after that week's terrestrial showing.
The phrase "...for the next episode, digital viewers should press the BLUE button now..." could be used in much the same way as the RED button is dedicated to digital Teletext. This would eliminate having to call up and navigate the Electronic Programme Guide (a bit fiddly) or having to remember all the numbers for all the digital TV channels (terrifyingly-tragic).
Anything more complex than a single, coloured button-push would potentially alienate a large demographic of certain TV audiences...
Showtime first to license TiVo promo technology
[krelnik, Oct 04 2004]
||TiVo has baked something very close to this. Broadcasters who license their technology can encode some hidden data in on-air promotions for programs. When viewed on a TiVo unit, an icon pops up over the ad when this data is detected. If you hit the button while the icon is on the screen, your unit is automatically programmed to pick up the show being described, no matter what channel it is on. It can be a show coming on next or a show far in the future, whatever.