Automatic Content Recognition Shake-out as Broadcasters Ad-Models under Pressure, Says ABI Research

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – An automatic content recognition (ACR) shake-out has occurred on the eve of this year’s Super Bowl game. Direct to consumer monetization of these applications has been challenging (audio-centric Shazam and Soundhound are rare exceptions) as suppliers have turned to assist the broadcasters in social engagement and interactive applications for reality TV and other hit programming, such as Glee and American Idol.

According to ABI Research senior analyst Michael Inouye: “In recent days, Yahoo announced it would shut down its IntoNow service, i.TV and GetGlue rebranded as TVTag and reward-site Viggle acquired dijit and its NextGuide TV application. Last December, TMS made a more significant acquisition of Gracenote, a deal more about rich metadata but including a significant ACR platform as well. Many ACR application companies have regrouped to provide interactive and synchronized platforms for broadcasters to engage audiences on the second-screen. Core technology companies are pinning their hopes on integration of ACR in the Smart TV.”

Practice director Sam Rosen added, “We expect less explicitly Shazam-enabled commercial calls-to-action this year than in the midst of the second screen hype in early 2012. However, broadcasters have begun to focus on syndicating interactive and advertising content – with better advertising campaigns going beyond brand awareness, affinity, and loyalty. The business of advertising must catch up with technology, which has already proven ACR for tablets as well as the Smart TV itself.”

In upcoming research within its First Screen Video Devices ( and Set-Top Box and Home Networks ( Research Services, ABI Research validates the growth of ACR within connected TV platforms, climbing to nearly 50% of Smart TV shipments this year and becoming nearly ubiquitous by 2019.

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