Not getting your fill of connected TV action with contextual content and ads appearing alongside your soaps? Your hunger could be satisfied by picking up a Sony-made television in 2013, as Hirai and Co. have inked a multi-year deal with the folks at Ensequence to bake software for such experiences into all of their connected TVs starting next year. Ensequence leverages the automatic content recognition tech inside Sony's sets and provides a platform for content producers and advertisers to sling up everything from relevant coupons to trivia games on displays. If you watched the 2012 Olympics through Verizon FiOS, chances are you've glimpsed the company's technology in action. Proud owners of connected TVs made by Sony between 2011 and 2012 won't be left out of the contextual content bonanza, however, as a software update packing Ensequence's secret sauce will be available. For more details, and prognostications regarding the future of internet-savvy televisions, hit the jump for the press release.
Sony TV Customers to Experience Interactive Content Within TV Shows and Ads
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK – DECEMBER 04, 2012 – Ensequence and Sony Electronics reached a multi-year deal to embed Ensequence's platform software on all Sony Connected TVs. The collaboration offers advertisers and programmers an easier, more scalable way to engage viewers directly with TV ads and shows, transforming passive viewing into active participation. Ensequence's advertising enhancements include clickable banners, landing pages, product request forms, coupons and surveys. TV show capabilities include polls, trivia games, photo galleries, location-based check-in, social status updates and more. Beginning in the first quarter of 2013, all new Sony TVs will ship with Ensequence platform software. In addition, the software will be available for Sony 2011-12 model Connected TVs through software updates.
The partnership between Ensequence and Sony makes it easier than ever to enhance TV programming and advertising with immersive and actionable content. Advertisers and programmers can add their branding and content to customize the Ensequence platform, which takes care of deploying, tracking and managing it. Audiences see promotional "bugs" on their screens that they click to launch content related to the ad or show they are watching.
Connected TV penetration is forecast to grow substantially, reaching 70 percent of total TV shipments during 2016 according to IMS Research. Ensequence research shows that adding interactivity to TV increases programming ratings by up to 20 percent, brand recall by as much as 50 percent and intent to purchase by up to 40 percent. In addition, viewer interaction and repeat visit rates exceed 30 percent and 50 percent respectively. With the Sony partnership, Ensequence is poised to deliver advanced products for television across multiple platforms, including connected TVs, to help advertisers and programmers reach a critical mass of viewers with interactive content.
"Television viewers are craving and demanding more immersive and active experiences with their favorite TV programming," said Nick Colsey, Vice President of Sony Electronics' Business Development Division. "As market leaders with Auto Content Recognition (ACR) capabilities fully integrated into its connected HDTVs, Sony is excited to deliver Ensequence's enhancements to viewers, not only unlocking new content now, but creating a viable platform for programming producers to push the envelope in viewer engagement."
"Connected TV is the next frontier for brand advertisers and TV shows producers, and Ensequence offers the most advanced products for transforming TV into a deeper, more engaging experience," said Peter Low, CEO of Ensequence. "The Ensequence partnership with Sony offers advertisers and programmers the first turnkey platform for delivering immersive, compelling experiences seamlessly and at scale to Sony Connected TV viewers."
The Sony Connected TV partnership leverages Ensequence's expertise delivering advanced television experiences with major TV programming and advertising. For example, Ensequence recently helped deliver enhanced NBCUniversal London Olympics content to Verizon's 4.5 million FiOS TV customers, resulting in new benchmarks for interactive TV engagement.