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YouView to deliver more ‘personalised, multi-device experience’

youview logoYouView has put in place the building blocks to move to a “highly personalised, multi-devices experience,” and now wants to further develop its platform along these lines, according to Jeff Hunter, chief architect at the UK-based digital platform operator.

Speaking on a panel session at IBC, Hunter said that YouView wanted to make its UX personalised to enable viewers to find content from multiple sources. “It is not sufficient for anyone to operate in their own bubble. You need to get smarter,” he said.

Pay TV providers need to look for insight into what people have viewed and what type of content they might find interesting on the basis of data analytics, Hunter told attendees at the IBC conference.

He said that the proliferation of content sources with differing availability of rights meant people often experiences problems getting access to all the content they want on different devices. There is a need for creativity on the part of platform operators to find ways to get round this problem, offering automatically to bookmark content they want to watch or suggesting alternatives to them, Hunter said.

He said the entry of new online and social media players meant that “gatecrashers are battling for the pay TV market”.

However, he said, the battle is about more than TV. While people spend a lot of time and emotion on content, with TV playing a vital part in social interactions, the insights from TV can deliver a more sophisticated level of understanding of consumers’ needs and interests than just knowing what has been watched. Operators have to expand into different consumer touchpoints such as smart home automation and e-health. Companies are seeking “make themselves omnipresent”, he said.

He said there was a conflict between pay TV operators that want to aggregate content into their own players and the likes of the BBC which wanted to control the distribution of its content through iPlayer. He said YouView had sought to provide aggregated content discovery but left the app to the broadcaster.

Hunter also said that YouView stakeholders are at a threshold of deciding whether to stick with traditional mass-market advertising or to migrate to a targeted advertising model that may result in ads reaching smaller audiences.