14 Companies Participate in CableLabs' Addressable Advertising Interop Event

--Event Focused on Dynamic Insertion of Addressable Ads into VOD Avails

US cable-industry research, development and standardization body, CableLabs, said Tuesday that 14 companies participated in an Addressable Advertising Interfaces interoperability event held at its Louisville, Colorado laboratories, during the week of June 1st. According to the organization, the event--which included multi-vendor interoperability testing for dynamic video-on-demand ad insertion and other addressable advertising technologies--saw the participation of Arris, BIAP, BlackArrow, Cisco, Concurrent, Ensequence, Motorola, OpenTV, RGB Networks, Sigma Systems, Tandberg Television, This Technology, TVN Entertainment and Unisoft. Participants demonstrated interoperability among their products, based on SCTE-130 standards for advanced digital advertising and CableLabs' own Stewardship and Fulfillment Interface (SaFI) standards. The interop demonstrated the ability to dynamically insert ads into VOD avails based on addressability, CableLabs says. "We greatly appreciate continued vendor support of MSO interest in an end-to-end architecture that can support a variety of advanced advertising products," Don Dulchinos, CableLabs' SVP of advanced platforms, said in a prepared statement. Added Paul Woidke, who in addition to serving as SVP and general manager of advanced advertising for OpenTV, is chairman of DVS/Working Group 5, the SCTE committee that is working on addressable advertising: "The collaborative effort by companies in this interop, as well as others in SCTE Digital Video Working Group 5, is helping to greatly refine and validate common standards for advanced advertising."

Products tested at the event included ad campaign managers, ad decision servers, and information systems that segment subscribers, organize content and define ad-placement opportunities. CableLabs says that the event allowed participating vendors to demonstrate critical components in an end-to-end process in which an ad is selected, dynamically inserted into an on-demand programming stream, and delivered to a digital television customer: customer responses can then be processed for fulfillment and/or aggregated (with no personally identifiable information exposed), the organization says, through a common measurement format and shared with either the cable operator or the advertiser.

The week-long event culminated with vendor demonstrations that were observed by business and technology executives from several cable operators and programming providers, along with experts from Canoe Ventures, the company that is implementing the US cable industry's initiative to create a national unified platform for interactive and addressable advertising (note: both SCTE-130 and CableLabs' SaFI interfaces are elements of the Advanced Advertising 1.0 specification that was recently announced as a joint effort between Canoe Ventures and CableLabs). "We are very pleased with the strong, ongoing show of support from the vendor community for the Advanced Advertising 1.0 specification," Canoe Ventures CTO, Arthur Orduna, said in a prepared statement. "The increasing number of compliant products and the significant progress being made by leading technology providers are critical elements to making the advanced advertising market real for all players."

The interoperability event was the second in a series of Advanced Advertising activities that CableLabs has supported and hosted this year and last. The organization says that, together with participating vendors, it will use SCTE-130 and SaFI as a framework to enable additional Advanced Advertising applications and to test additional parts of the standard as they near completion. It is inviting vendors with an interest in digital ad insertion, placement or management to contact its vendor relations program coordinator, Sheila Keller, if they would like information on how to participate in future interop events.

North America