Bits & Bytes
HERE COMES ONE-CLICK SHOPPING
While the groundwork has barely begun on the advanced cable networks to handle movies-on-demand and home shopping, Interaxx Television Network Inc. in Miami thinks it may have a way to create a nearly limitless interactive system that uses existing technology and wiring.
Interaxx' set-top box is basically a 486-based multimedia PC with circuitry that connects it to the TV, any cable system, and a phone line. The box will come with a CD-ROM compressed with data--say, the latest Sears, Roebuck & Co. catalog--and other services. The disk will hold "static" information, such as an image of a bicycle and text, while "dynamic" information--current selling price, say--gets broadcast over the cable. One click on the remote control sends the order and credit card information via the telephone in as little as half a second. Confirmation is returned via the coaxial cable to the box, which can then print a receipt and provide delivery dates. The company is currently testing its technology in Cool Springs, Fla., but hopes to go into broader market testing next year.EDITED BY IRA SAGER