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ITV betting big on personalisation of Hub

UK broadcaster ITV is aiming to more double average monthly users to its ITV Hub on-demand service and increase the average number of hours spent by 75% through initiatives including a much greater degree of personalisation of the offering, according to Stuart Jones, head of product, AVOD.

Speaking at the Video Exchange Streaming event in London yesterday, Jones said that the majority of users of ITV Hub are currently light users who watch specific genres of content. Light users typically only watch one programme on average per session and return less than more intensive users.

Jones said that ITV believes it can engage users for longer through more personalisation. The company is deploying collaborative filtering, based on users historic preferences, using techniques including matrix factorisation and neural networks to figure out what individual viewers are watching on the service.

He said that the personalisation effort was “hard to implement’ and that the company had ‘to make sure we get it right”.

He said ITV’s aim is to ultimately to move from “30 million users to 30 million unique experience”.

Jones said ITV typically only surfaced 20 or 30 hours on the Hub homepage out of the thousands of hours available at present.

He said that the broadcaster faced the challenge of wanting to surface a big content library while making an AVOD model work through measurement of usage.

Separately, he said that ITV is rolling out a rebrand for its home page on Android devices this week.