NDS, TNS Can Track Individual TV Viewers
Joint Audience-Measurement Solution Aimed at Opt-In Panels
Todd Spangler 9/2/2009 4:00:37 PM EDT

NDS and TNS Media Research have enhanced their joint TV-audience measurement offering by adding the ability to identify individual viewers-and track their viewing habits-in homes that have agreed to participate in a measurement panel.

The RPDi solution, based on NDS's Dynamic audience measurement system and TNS's RaPiDView analysis service, is designed to help TV operators better understand audience behavior by collecting and analyzing data about individual viewers as well as information at the household level.

The viewer-tracking application prompts viewers to identify themselves by their first name, using their remote control, and lets users add any additional guests watching TV alongside them. The service only measures audience viewing in those homes that have agreed to participate through an opt-in process.

"Operators are turning to [set-top box] measurement because it allows them to truly understand the behavior of their subscribers, providing rich data not available from traditional measurement methods," Gideon Gilboa, NDS senior product marketing manager for advertising solutions, said in a statement. "To date this has mostly been reported on a household level but with RPDi customers can have the best of both worlds: rich STB data and strong individual level reporting to improve their business decisions and advertising sales."

NDS and TNS, which announced their audience-measurement partnership at IBC 2008, have joint customers for the service that include DirecTV, BSkyB, Sky Television in New Zealand and Foxtel.

Also Wednesday, NDS announced a partnership with Access Systems Europe Holdings B.V., a provider of advanced software technologies for mobile devices to bring pay-TV and free-to-air channels to Internet-connected TVs without the need for a set-top box. The two companies will integrate the NDS InfiniteTV hybrid content platform with Access' NetFront Browser.

In addition, NDS announced the EPG Framework, designed for broadcasters to design, deploy and manage their own electronic program guides as well as gives pay-TV operators the flexibility to update the EPG as needed and to introduce new revenue streams via EPG-based ads and promotions. NDS customers that have already started using EPG Framework include Viasat and Bharti Airtel.

The NDS announcements are timed for IBC 2009, which is taking place Sept. 10-15 in Amsterdam.