may june - Page 12

Cover Story presentation offerings and recommendation features help viewers easily connect to the shows and movies they’ll enjoy most - from the most popular new titles and back catalogue content all the way down the long tail to lesser known hidden gems and indie offerings.” COMPLEX. “The complex world of content presentation and driving content consumption is an art,” suggests NAGRA’s Smith-Chaigneau. “There are almost too many UIs available in the market. People get used to one style of navigation; they then switch services to be immediately lost or frustrated. We now have a sort of UI-UX uniformity across almost all of these AVoD/SVoD service providers. Is that a big hit? It all depends on who owns which part of the equation.” “Even globally-successful OTT video subscription operators continue to develop their content recommendation and presentation engines,” advises Omdia’s Signorelli. “In its key markets, Amazon has proven that aggregating content from different services and different business models and providing it in one interface can boost sales across the board by allowing consumers to easily find and procure more similar content.” “The biggest hit is providing a clear answer to the ‘why’,” says Teravolt’s Fröhlich. “Every feature and recommendation needs to be backed up with a clear idea. Users need to understand why they are being shown a particular lane and why the recommendations they are getting make sense. Quality beats quantity here: if the fourth or fifth recommendation in a lane are not relevant, it’s better to remove them entirely, instead of having the user wonder why they are seeing these recommendations. A big miss is not respecting the hardware. If a service includes too many animations, it can happen that the client can’t get rendered by the hardware.” COMPETITION. “The biggest ‘miss’ is the lack of personalisation in the user experience and putting the same content in front of all viewers without taking their individual likes and dislikes into account,” suggests Think Analytics’ Docherty. “Comprehensive AI/ML predictive algorithms are essential for any service provider seeking to provide a quality service in an ever more competitive market. The competition now is no longer traditional TV companies, but the FAANG group who, since their inception, have embraced AI/ML technologies. They understand their customers.” “In the world of content discovery, it should be taken as a given that the experience will be visually rich, immersive and extraordinary,” “The complex world of content presentation and driving content consumption is an art.” - Anthony Smith- Chaigneau, NAGRA contends Charles Dawes, senior director, international marketing at Xperi. “The inclusion of highlyvisual poster art and atmospheric elements like trailers, whilst not completely replacing text, have stepped up the experience for consumers as they browse through an interface. But some of the biggest differentiators introduced in recent years move beyond the visual experience. One such feature is voice led discovery. This has proved to be ‘hit’ that can dramatically simplify the way people find, watch and enjoy content.” “Another hit is the real aggregation of content from all available sources including linear, recorded (local and cloud) and streaming services. The latest TiVo Video Trends report is showing people who subscribe to pay-TV are using an average of 6.9 video services. Those that have ‘cut-the-cord’ are using 4.9 services. This proliferation of services continues to create a sense of ‘content-chaos’ for consumers that TiVo has a long heritage for solving with solutions like our OnePass, which was introduced in 2015, through to our latest product the TiVo Stream 4K that brings together content on an Android TV based dongle. A third area would be how the underlying use of data – clickstream or interaction – is making recommendations more personal alongside driving how businesses are able to identify and address behaviours like churn before they happen. The biggest misses we’ve seen are when these services aren’t implemented properly. A voice service that doesn’t understand you or only provides a basic search isn’t going to be used. An aggregation experience that doesn’t include key content doesn’t cut it and recommendations that aren’t agile, and suggest programming you’ve already seen, will frustrate the customer into not trusting them.” According to Vionlabs’ Bergström, the biggest misses are around assuming that everybody is similar and there is something that’s considered ‘good’. “Good is subjective and in the eye of the beholder and we must understand content better, and link it to viewer tastes down to an individual level.” Secondly, “thinking that it’s all about pushing another carousel of content in front of the customer. We, as humans, want structure and convenience, not chaos and abundance.” For Bergström, the biggest hits are: Personalised channels: Understanding that moving to OTT doesn’t mean that linear is dead. “Combining the personalisation of OTT with the lean-back convenience of linear is the future; and sentiment matching of ads in AVoD. At Vionlabs, we are true believers in AVoD. To be able to do sentiment matching between ads and the content being consumed will make the AVoD experience less intrusive and benefit everyone from viewers and AVoD-providers to advertisers.” OPTIONS. As to how providers can improve the service and experience, Friedman says that with the media industry becoming more flexible and cloud-based, there are more options for modular solutions than ever before. “Providers that want to make a splash will need to look carefully into their technology stack and see what components need a refresh. Sometimes they may find that a few tweaks, together with metadata enhancements, can help them upgrade their service offerings.” “Clearly, if you are Netflix, you can personalise within your customer base, if you are an aggregator putting Netflix on your platform, you can’t do that level of personalisation,” suggests Bisson. “I think that another aspect of personalisation is ‘chance’ discovery, so solving the issue of giving everyone more of the same, which is the problem we see on social media, where people refer to it as an echo chamber. Chance discovery is something that linear TV is perhaps a better platform for than an on-demand interface. It’s another area tech and platforms need to work on, to allow that “UI and discovery can make or break a customer experience.” - Max Signorelli, Omdia 12 EUROMEDIA