Monday, Jan. 9, 2012 | 7:48 p.m.
A new partnership between Myspace and Panasonic announced Monday at the International Consumer Electronics Show is looking to redefine how people interact with their televisions.
Dubbed “Myspace TV,” the new product, announced at Panasonic’s preshow press event, is aimed at bringing social networking sensibilities to watching television.
The service’s goal is to let its users interact with their friends while watching television, which it accomplishes through on-screen messages or video chat. A promotional video played during the event showed one group of friends arguing over play calls while watching football, while another showed friends sharing a movie, even though none of them were in the same room.
“We’re giving the opportunity to connect with your friends in real time,” said actor and singer Justin Timberlake, a co-owner of Myspace. “No longer do we have to crowd around the same (television) to experience it together.”
The new venture is a bold move for MySpace, which has seen its relevance as a social network shrink with the rise of Facebook.
Using Myspace TV, viewers also will be able to see what television shows are popular among their friends and discover new content through the network. The service will come built into Panasonic-made televisions.
The announcement comes on the eve of the official start of the convention, where internet-connected televisions from a variety of manufacturers are expected to be heavily touted.
Many of the televisions will include variations on similar feature sets, likely to include web browsers and apps for accessing specific content through services like Netflix or YouTube.
During the press event, Panasonic showed off its packaging of features in its internet connected televisions and predicted continued growth in the 3D television market.
After previewing several models of 3D televisions, the company announced that it has formed a partnership with NBC to broadcast the 2012 Olympic Games in 3D.