One of the world’s top international IT business consulting and systems integration firms has teamed up with Verance Corporation on the acceleration and expansion of the development of next-generation broadcast TV in the U.S., and in Europe.
Verance is partnering with Fincons Group, an entity focused on the research, development and deployment of HbbTV interactive content and advertising experiences.
The partnership merges Fincons Group’s expertise deploying Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV (HbbTV) applications with the Verance Aspect watermark technology, which enables Next Gen TV experiences to reach 100% of ATSC 3.0 and HbbTV connected TVs, regardless of distribution path.
Initial projects will focus on accelerating Next Gen TV readiness in both markets. Examples include the identification and development of leading consumer offerings, business modeling, proof of concept and market trial management, retailer education, and service life-cycle management and operations.
“The convergence of broadcast and broadband enables novel strategies and new revenue streams within the traditional TV space,” said Francesco Moretti, Deputy CEO at Fincons. “We look forward to partnering with Verance to apply our HbbTV experience to the ATSC environment in the U.S. and include the Aspect watermark into our portfolio for the European market.”
The announcement comes on the heels of the beta versions of their Next Gen TV experiences at CES 2019 in Las Vegas. “These were based on direct collaboration with leading U.S. broadcasters and our participation in the ATSC 3.0 Interactive Environment Specialist Group,” Moretti said.
The Verance Aspect technology was selected by the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) to be a part of the ATSC 3.0 Next Gen TV standard and is currently being adapted for use within the HbbTV ecosystem.
By deploying Aspect, programmers can gain cross-platform audience measurement data and new revenue opportunities such as audience targeting and addressable advertising.
Viewers, in turn, can receive more personalized and interactive experiences; device manufacturers gain a new opportunity to market and sell TVs; and advertisers gain linear measurement and attribution capabilities.
Without Aspect, the reach and scale of Next Gen TV experiences are projected to be significantly smaller, Verance says.
In 2020, only 20% of ATSC 3.0-enabled connected TVs in the U.S. are expected to be able to receive Next Gen TV experiences without Aspect.
This, Verance explains, is because the metatdata and triggers required for these experiences are not carried by cable operators due to their different transmission protocols. Aspect enables this information to be automatically recovered by the TV regardless of distribution path.
In 2018, Fincons invested in the conversion of HbbTV solutions to the ATSC 3.0 Next Gen TV standard in the U.S.
“We see 2019 as a pivotal year for Next Gen TV market readiness as we look to full market deployment in 2020,” said Eric Anderson, SVP/Chief Partnership Officer at Verance. “For the industry to achieve rapid success, it will be vital for both programmers and TV makers to take an integrated business approach combining proven strategy, tech integration, end user service offerings and operations. That is what this partnership achieves.”