Pearson Broadband teams with IBM to deliver interactive e-Learning TV services over broadband, narrowband and wireless networks

Pearson Broadband, the broadband television unit of Pearson, one of the world's leading international media and education companies, today announced an alliance with IBM to deliver interactive, video-intensive e-Learning content over broadband, narrowband and wireless networks. IBM will provide infrastructure services and technology to Pearson Broadband
·including content management software and hardware
for a trial of the new Pearson service in Europe and Asia.

Pearson's broadband service trial will be distributed across a number of platforms using standard Internet protocols. With the help of IBM technology, the service will be accessible via any device that receives digital TV or runs a web browser - including PCs, smart phones set top boxes, digital slates and browser-equipped digital assistants. Pearson Broadband intends to use the trial to deliver educational content with "anytime, anywhere" flexibility to users of all ages.

"Our goal is to change the learning landscape by drawing on a rich spectrum of Pearson digital media and delivering it to consumers wherever they are," said John Hollar, President of Pearson Broadband. "Broadband requires a serious infrastructure, and we turned to IBM to help us move elegantly from pilot to global rollout and stay ahead of the accelerating growth of broadband technologies. IBM's services give us the levels of access, control and security necessary for managing the rich content of this service on a global basis."

As pioneers in the media-rich networked information sector, Pearson Broadband has turned to IBM to help develop a web-based distribution and management strategy for educational content. IBM’s technology and consultancy services will provide Pearson Broadband with the tools to deliver education services that bring a rich and interactive online learning experience directly into the homes of online consumers.

According to a recent report by Meta Group, the enterprise content management market is expected to exceed $10 billion by 2004. Pearson Broadband is employing an end-to-end IBM content management and distribution system that integrates a wide variety of unstructured data sources into a single web-based interactive offering. The solution uses IBM's Content Manager software, which, in combination with IBM's Enterprise Information Portal, IBM's DB2 database and IBM WebSphere software platform, will provide the software infrastructure for the system.

"Interactive television is an exciting proposition, and an area where IBM's rich-media technology and e-business infrastructure software can be utilised to increase quality and efficiencies," said Marcel Van Hulle, Director of Worldwide Content Management Sales, IBM. "Our work with Pearson is a great example of how IBM is leading the way in making the delivery of broadband services a viable business model."

Pearson Broadband's services are designed to deliver content across a wide bandwidth Internet connection using Internet Protocols (IP) and to distribute content through a web browser. Ultimately, the services will allow consumers to take advantage of Pearson's leading education and consumer content The new joint development efforts will showcase Pearson Broadband's education productions to produce new revenue opportunities for both organizations. Development will take place at Pearson Broadband's production studios in London.

Notes

About Pearson Broadband

Operating from offices in New York and London, Pearson Broadband is the consumer broadband arm of Pearson ( www.pearson.com ), the international media company with market-leading businesses in education (Pearson Education), strategic business information (The Financial Times Group), consumer publishing (The Penguin Group, including Penguin, Viking, Dorling Kindersley, and other world-class imprints); and television through RTL Group, Europe's leading integrated broadcasting and communications group. Pearson Broadband creates interactive, media-rich broadband content and applications together with linear television that span the learning spectrum: early childhood, schools, professional skills development and lifelong learning.

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. IBM software offers the widest range of applications, middleware and operating systems for all types of computing platforms, allowing customers to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. IBM Content Manager is a first-of-its-kind content management solution designed to help manage the full spectrum of digital information generated in today's e-business world. The fastest way to get more information about IBM software is through the IBM software home page at: www.software.ibm.com

For further information about IBM Content Manager go to www.ibm.com/software/data/cm

For further information

Wendy Kerr
Pearson Broadband
+44 207 969 8036
Wendy.Kerr@pearsonbroadband.com