"Widgets" are hot at gadget show

January 10, 2010
By Chris Lefkow

LAS VEGAS, Nevada — Spend a lot of time on the Web while watching television? Maybe not. But a lot of companies are betting you will. All of the top television manufacturers at the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) here are offering Internet-enabled TV sets and most of the popular Web brands have built the programs known as "widgets" to run on them.

Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Netflix, Twitter and YouTube, to name just a few, are among the Web titans which offer the miniature windows that pop up on TV screens while shows are on.

"They're really popular," said Jeila Foroozani of US television maker Vizio. "If you want to keep up with your Facebook account or your Twitter account you can just call it up anytime while you watch your shows.

"Right now we have 25 to 30 widgets," she told AFP. "By the end of 2010, we should have about 100 and then we'll just go up from there."

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