Verance reaches agreement with Sinclair Broadcast Group, Gray Television, Graham Media Group, and Capitol Broadcasting
Verance announced today that it has entered into agreements with Sinclair Broadcast Group, Gray Television, Graham Media Group, and Capitol Broadcasting Company to implement the Verance Aspect audio watermark on stations across the station groups. As a result, each of the broadcaster’s NextGen Broadcast (ATSC 3.0) applications, which offer the opportunity to drive new business models and revenue through interactive applications, can now reach up to five times the number of homes – specifically enabling all homes that receive their television signals through the NextGen TV’s HDMI connection via a cable/satellite set top box or media adapter.
Aspect is Verance’s high-performance implementation of the ATSC open watermarking standards. The Verance Aspect watermark launches broadcast applications by carrying metadata and triggers associated with NextGen Broadcast experiences through all distribution paths (including ATSC 1.0 over-the-air, ATSC 3.0 over-the-air, cable/satellite, and over-the-top services) to reach 100% of connected televisions. Without the Verance Aspect watermark, approximately 80% of households are unable to receive NextGen capabilities.
This announcement of major broadcaster agreements builds on the momentum that Verance announced at NAB last April that LG Electronics was the first television manufacturer to implement ATSC 3.0 watermark detection on NextGen TVs. Verance expects additional television manufacturers to follow in LG’s footsteps.
“Bringing Verance’s Aspect watermarking to all of our stations accelerates our NextGen Broadcast applications strategy to better understand our viewers and to provide them with personalized broadcast experiences,” said Mike Kralec, CTO, Sinclair Broadcast Group. “We believe that Verance’s watermarking technology substantially enhances use of the NextGen Broadcast standard that we hope that all the television manufacturers will adopt quickly.”
A demonstration of the Verance Aspect watermark application will be on display at the NAB Show in Las Vegas, April 16-19. As part of the ATSC Booth (#W3443), Sinclair will be showing how viewers can have access to Broadcast App functionality by embedding the watermark in the audio signal that launches the interactive experience on a NextGen TV for any pay TV or ATSC 1.0 over-the-air viewer. The Broadcast App is then available to all NextGen TV viewers who want to take advantage of this new capability, regardless of how they receive the TV signal, gaining access to both broadcast and broadband content.
“NextGen TV is a game changer for broadcast television, and it is exciting to see interactive experiences powered by Verance watermarking on Gray’s stations,” said David Burke, Senior Vice President and CTO of Gray Television. “With Verance watermarking, Gray can now proceed with confidence, knowing that our applications can be received by the largest number of viewers across all of our signals and can help Gray with our business objectives.”
“Verance’s Aspect watermarking will enable Graham to reach our HDMI viewers with interactive experiences,“ said Anthony Plosz, VP and CTO, Graham Media Group. “This capability enables Graham and other broadcasters to better understand and serve our audiences and to better support our NextGen TV business opportunities.”
“We are excited to rollout Verance’s Aspect watermarking across our stations to help drive the distribution of our NextGen TV apps to a larger audience and to allow us to bring new NextGen experiences to our viewers,“ said Peter Sockett, Director of Engineering and Operations, Capitol Broadcasting Company. “This opportunity will help us to better scale the broadcaster application opportunity.”
“Sinclair, Gray, Graham, and Capitol are at the forefront of a broadcaster movement to establish a direct connection with their viewers to drive engagement and revenue, and Verance is excited to have these innovative broadcasters as partners. As interactive applications deploy across the United States with the broader deployment of NextGen TV, we are excited for enhanced viewing experiences, such as sports betting and dynamic advertising, that drive new revenue opportunities for broadcasters,” said Nil Shah, Chief Executive Officer of Verance.
ABOUT SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP
Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: SBGI) is a diversified media company and a leading provider of local news and sports. The Company owns, operates and/or provides services to 185 television stations in 86 markets affiliated with all the major broadcast networks; owns Tennis Channel and multicast networks Comet, CHARGE! and TBD; and owns and provides services to 21 regional sports network brands. Sinclair’s content is delivered via multiple platforms, including over-the-air, multi-channel video program distributors, and the nation’s largest streaming aggregator of local news content, NewsON. The Company regularly uses its website as a key source of Company information which can be accessed at www.sbgi.net.
ABOUT GRAHAM MEDIA GROUP
Graham Media Group, a subsidiary of Graham Holdings Co. (NYSE: GHC), operates Graham Digital, Social News Desk and seven local media hubs — each in a top-75 market and all recognized as news leaders: KPRC–Houston, WDIV–Detroit and WSLS–Roanoke (NBC); KSAT–San Antonio (ABC); WKMG– Orlando (CBS); WJXT–Jacksonville (fully local), and WCWJ–Jacksonville (CW). Based in Detroit, Graham Digital is a digital media and technology development group widely recognized as a leading industry innovator. Social News Desk provides its 2,500-plus worldwide newsroom customers with a single dashboard to publish, measure, curate and monetize local news content on social platforms.
ABOUT CAPITOL BROADCASTING COMPANY
Capitol Broadcasting Company, Inc. is a diversified communications company which owns and/or operates WRAL-TV, WRAZ-TV, WRAL-FM, WRAL-HD2, WNGT-CD, WCMC-FM, WCMC-HD1, WDNC-AM, WCMC-HD2, WCMC-HD3, WCLY-AM, WCMC-HD4, Microspace, WRAL Digital and Wolfpack Sports Properties (a joint venture with Learfield) in Raleigh, NC; WILM-TV, WILT-LD and Sunrise Broadcasting in Wilmington, NC; The Durham Bulls Baseball Club, Bull City Hospitality, and Coastal Plain League in Durham, NC; The Holly Springs Salamanders in Holly Springs, NC; the American Underground startup hub in Durham, NC; and real estate interests including the American Tobacco Historic District in Durham, NC, and Rocky Mount Mills in Rocky Mount, NC.
Verance® Aspect™ is a global watermarking platform that powers broadband features on broadcast television by enabling sports betting, dynamic advertising and interactivity across all screens and distribution paths. Aspect supports new and existing industry standards including ATSC 3.0 and HbbTV and works in today’s ATSC 1.0 broadcasting environment. Leading programmers across the United States have deployed Aspect. Verance content measurement and enhancement technologies are at the forefront of innovation and set the industry standard for television, movies, and music. Our solutions have been adopted by over 100 leading entertainment and technology companies and deployed in over 350 million consumer products worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.verance.com/