SAN FRANCISCO – Yahoo Inc. (YHOO) and Intel Corp. (INTC) said on Tuesday they are teaming up to pipe sports statistics to TV screens, targeting fans who devour data about real-world players to manage their fantasy teams.
The deal helps the Internet media giant expand away from the computer screen to the TV screen, while the world's top chipmaker aims to showcase the benefits of its Viiv initiative aimed at making the PC a hub for home media and entertainment.
The service, called Yahoo Sports for TV, will let users get detailed statistics for ongoing games through a menu overlaid on a television screen and operated with a remote control.
It is launching with a focus on fantasy football, in which participants assemble rosters of American football players and closely track their weekly performances.
"Sports fans are statistics fanatics, they love the numbers. We give them more numbers than they can handle but we do it in a way that's very friendly for the TV," said Patrick Barry, director of Yahoo's digital home group.
"We enable it for the user who is leaning back on the couch with a beer in their hand," Barry said.
The service will eventually expand to include baseball, basketball, soccer and other sports, Barry said.
Intel hopes the arrangement will help drive interest in Viiv, which it announced this year to help it gain a foothold in the living room.
Viiv-branded PCs contain Intel chips and are intended to handle digital music and video, but analysts say the company has so far found it hard to convince consumers of the benefits.
"This is just the beginning of some of the new breakthrough experiences you can see on Viiv," said Kevin Corbett, vice president of Intel's digital home group.
"One of the challenges with Viiv is that the platform is so rich and so powerful," Corbett said. "The tough thing is how do you explain that to the consumer."
The companies did not reveal financial terms of the deal.
To use Yahoo Sports for TV, a user will need to have a Viiv PC. The computer can either be hooked up directly to the TV or to a digital media adaptor that relays the signal to the TV.