Interactive TV News Round-Up (I): 4A's, BlackArrow, Antik Technology, Baynote, ioko

--4A's and BlackArrow Launch Research Initiative on Effectiveness of VOD Advertising
--Antik Technology Launches Hybrid 3D Set-Top Box
--Baynote Powers Personalized Search and Recommendations for ioko's VOD Solutions

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been busy this week working on the TV of Tomorrow Show 2011, we are covering recent news in round-up/summary form. Once again, we anticipate that it will take us a few days to catch up with all the news we plan to cover: so if your company has sent us a press release or briefed us on an announcement, and you don't see your news covered in this issue, please bear with us.

  • Advertising-industry body, the 4A's, and advanced advertising company, BlackArrow, have joined with a number of media companies to launch the Advanced Advertising Media Project (AAMP), a research initiative that is billed as bringing together media-industry stakeholders to measure the impact of advanced advertising within free VOD programming. "This multiphase initiative will test, measure, analyze and compare consumer perceptions and responses to advertising within VOD versus traditional TV environments," BlackArrow and the 4A's state in their press materials. "AAMP will leverage the collective knowledge and expertise of advertisers, agencies, programmers and cable system operators to shape dynamic advertising strategies and measurement that can help the industry to accelerate the monetization of VOD content. Participants in the AAMP program include companies such as the 4A's, A&E Television Networks, BlackArrow, CBS, Comcast, Digitas, Discovery Communications, Horizon Media, NDS and Rainbow Media, among others...In the first phase of the study, AAMP researchers completed in-depth interviews of more than 20 media industry thought leaders to secure a baseline understanding of industry perceptions and opportunities related to dynamic VOD advertising. Study results, to be announced shortly, will cover such topics as the current perceptions of TV; the future of advanced TV; barriers to advertising adoption within VOD; and the prioritization of requirements--by sector--of VOD advertising. Phase Two will comprise a VOD media research lab to explore and validate consumers' experiences when engaging with advertising in simulated VOD and linear-TV environments. Phase Three, an in-market test, will employ the collected media lab data as a basis for comparison with real-world results in a live, consumer trial." Said BlackArrow president, Nick Troiano: "As TV consumption continues to fragment across a myriad of platforms and devices, it's critical for key stakeholders in the New TV world to work together to develop new advertising business models that are sustainable in the long term. AAMP is designed to take a global view of the critical short- and long-term needs of the major stakeholders, and to help the entire industry to prioritize the steps that need to be taken to achieve a broad-scale deployment of effective VOD advertising."
  • Slovakian IPTV set-top box company, Antik Technology, has announced Juice 3D Extreme, a hybrid DVB/IP 3D set-top. The box is "based on the [STMicroelectronics] STi7108 system-on-chip with integrated high-performance host processor, dedicated 3D graphics, a hard-disk interface for PVR capability and Ethernet and USB connections, allowing users to connect equipment such as DVR storage, external flash or hard-disk drives," Antik states in its press materials. "Antik Technology's Juice 3D Extreme is a high-end hybrid DVB/IP set-top box using the capabilities of the new SoC. The STi7108 provides the STB with high processing power, smooth Web experience, and gaming. 3D capabilities such as 3D TV experience, 3D Electronic Program Guide user interface with 3D video content. The integrated SoC works with high energy efficiency due to the low power configurable architecture. STi7108 is using ARM Mali-400 graphics processor compatible with Khronos Open GL ES 2.0 to provide excellent 3D visual experience and for fast execution of Java-based STB middleware engines as well as Javascript and Flash Player components for online VOD and other content delivered via the Internet. The integrated STi7108 is able to decode video in industry-standard formats, including H.264, MVC, MPEG2, VC-1 or WMV9 Internet video, as well as MPEG4, up to high-definition resolution 1080p 50/60 simultaneously with 1080i/720p picture-in-picture or mosaic formats. The device provides inputs for up to six transport streams, and provides full-resolution HD 3DTV over HDMI 1.4 with HDCP copy protection."
  • Digital media systems integrator, ioko, has formed a strategic partnership with personalization and digital marketing optimization company, Baynote. "Through the partnership Baynote will power personalized search and recommendations for ioko's video-on-demand solutions, enabling media and entertainment companies to maximize monetization of their videos by personalizing the content discovery experience for their users," the companies state in their press materials. "By anonymously observing behavioral patterns of like-minded browsers, Baynote understands the intent of each individual site visitor and automatically displays the most relevant videos across any screen including PC, Mobile and TV. This approach is proven to increase video views by over 30 percent."
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