24 Companies Participate in Advanced Advertising 1.0 Interop at CableLabs

Programmers and Cable Executives Attend Industry’s Largest Interop to Date

LOUISVILLE, Colo. – CableLabs recently hosted the industry’s largest and most comprehensive Advanced Advertising Interop to date. Held in conjunction with Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) DVS/Working Group 5 and Canoe Ventures LLC, the interop was the latest in a series hosted by CableLabs as part of its support for the development of the capability to deliver new and compelling forms of advertising on cable.

At the week-long event, cable and programming executives attended demonstrations by 24 participating companies and saw first hand the companies’ end-to-end interoperability for a variety of ad formats including interactivity (such as voting and polling and request for information applications), ad insertion in VOD content, ad insertion in linear content, telescoping, and graphic overlays on VOD content. Some of the formats were enhanced with addressable advertising.

The companies demonstrated their ability to interoperate with one another using content formats and interfaces that meet the Advanced Advertising 1.0 Specification jointly developed and released earlier this year by CableLabs and Canoe Ventures. Advanced Advertising 1.0 standards and specifications allow cable companies to provide more innovative types of advanced ads on cable’s growing digital platform with consistent technologies, metrics and interfaces across a national footprint. The Advanced Advertising 1.0 specification is maintained by a CableLabs Working Group including cable operator, Canoe and CableLabs technical leads, with input from the vendor community.

“We are extremely pleased with the enthusiasm of the vendor community for implementing a common end-to-end architecture that will enable compelling new advertising products,” said Don Dulchinos, CableLabs Senior Vice President, Advertising and Interactive Services. “The great turnout shows the increasing momentum behind the MSO and Canoe efforts to adopt standards that allow for the delivery of new ad forms to a national footprint.”

Companies that participated in the Interop include: Alcatel-Lucent, ARRIS, Avail-TVN, BigBand Networks, BlackArrow, Cisco Systems, Concurrent Computer Corporation, Ensequence, FourthWall Media (formerly BIAP), Motorola, NBC Universal, NDS, Nielsen Claritas, OpenTV, RGB Networks, SeaChange, Sigma Systems, Softel, Strategy and Technology, Tandberg Television (Part of the Ericsson Group), ThinkAnalytics, ThisTechnology, UniSoft, and Visible World.

“This unprecedented collaboration among CableLabs, Canoe, SCTE and the vendor community moves us closer to our common vision. With standards, we can finally scale our products and offer national reach for marketers using our advanced ad products,” said Arthur Orduña, Chief Technology Officer of Canoe Ventures LLC.

Guests included representatives from BendBroadband, Cable Europe Labs, Cablevision, Canoe Ventures LLC, Comcast, Comcast Spotlight, Cox, Disney/ESPN, Harris Broadcast Communications, NBC Universal, NCTA, Starz, Texscan, Time Warner Cable and Turner.

The suppliers’ products included ad campaign managers, ad decision services, content information systems, placement opportunity systems, subscriber information systems, Enhanced TV (ETC) streamers, EBIF user agents, and ad splicers. Using those products, groups of vendors demonstrated the end-to-end process of delivering a variety of ad formats. The platform also enables customer response information to be aggregated (with no personally identifiable information exposed) through a common measurement format and shared with either the cable operator or the advertiser.

“This Interop highlights the progress of interoperability based on SCTE 130 standards and CableLabs SaFI (Stewardship and Fulfillment Interface) specs which will enable the delivery of advanced ad forms that include interactivity and addressability,” said Paul Woidke, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Advanced Advertising for OpenTV, and Chairman of DVS/Working Group 5, the SCTE committee that is working on advanced advertising.

CableLabs’ interoperability events provide vendors with an informal, laboratory setting in which they have the opportunity to test their latest products within CableLabs’ headends and testing environment, determine compliance with industry specifications and the ability of their products to interoperate with other devices in an end-to-end system. There is no charge to participate in Advanced Advertising interoperability events.

Information on all CableLabs activities focused on advanced advertising technology, along with information on industry standards, may be found at http://advancedadvertising.tv/. Vendors working on advanced advertising technology and formats should contact Sheila Keller [email protected], Vendor Relations Program Coordinator at CableLabs, for information on how to participate in future Interops.

Founded in 1988 by members of the cable television industry, Cable Television Laboratories is a non-profit research and development consortium that is dedicated to pursuing new cable telecommunications technologies and to helping its cable operator members integrate those advancements into their business objectives. Cable operators from around the world are members. CableLabs maintains web sites at www.cablelabs.com; www.opencable.com, www.tru2way.com, www.advancedadvertising.tv, www.packetcable.com; www.cablemodem.com; and www.cablenet.org;

The SCTE standards program provides an ANSI-accredited forum for the development of technical specifications supporting the cable telecommunications industry. “Working Group 5” of the SCTE Digital Video Subcommittee focuses on the development of advertising related digital cable television standards. SCTE Standards information is available at its web site: www.scte.org.

Canoe Ventures LLC is a company founded by the nation’s leading cable operators including Bright House Networks, Cablevision Systems Corporation, Charter Communications, Inc., Comcast Corporation, Cox Communications Inc., and Time Warner Cable. Based in New York City, the company is focused on making cable’s advanced advertising solutions easier to buy, use and measure. www.canoe-ventures.com