Joonpyo "JP" LeeIf you buy a Samsung connected TV in North America, it’ll come bundled with technology from Enswers. Enswers is a Korean company specialising in automatic cintent recognition (ACR) that was acquired by Korea Telecom in 2011. The company started out with speech recognition technology but has since added to image and video recognition, which Enswers says makes them the only player in the market offering all three services. Here Joonpyo “JP” Lee, CEO of Enswers America, explains to VAN what his company brings how the technology works, his company’s relationship with Samsung, and achieving scale on the second screen.

Could you provide some background information on what Enswers brings to the advertising market?

According to Nielsen, more than 40 percent of TV viewers simultaneously use their mobile devices while watching TV and most frequently during the commercial breaks. Enswers’ ACR (Automatic Content Recognition) technology takes advantage of this distraction and turns it into an interactive experience that leads to extended exposure of the brand.

Enswers’ ACR identifies particular advertisements, enabling advertisers to cultivate a relationship with their viewers on their own branded companion apps that synchronize with content being played. Advertisers launch interactive advertisements, customized to what viewers are watching, which in turn triggers viewers to take action and become more interactive with the content, ultimately exposing consumers to brand much longer than a 30 second commercial.

Unlike some of our competition, we provide white label SDKs, which means our ACR technology can be embedded on the advertiser’s own branded app or platform. This creates a unique and customized advertising experience without unnecessary third party branding.

How does the technology work?

Enswers technology analyzes image, audio, and video content to create a digital fingerprint, which is a unique pattern that identifies the content. ACR is performed by fingerprinting audiovisual data to create a multimedia search query. The fingerprint query is then used to search against a database of fingerprints cataloguing content and related information. Every day, Enswers identifies content for millions of queries against thousands of hours of audio and video content, while processing hundreds of media files and live feeds into its database.

How have Samsung been using your ACR technology in their connected TVs?

Enswers Video Recognition technology is embedded in all Samsung smart TV’s sold in North America. Enswers’ video and audio recognition technology are embedded at the hardware level for optimal performance and accurate results. Upon user consent, broadcasts playing on the TV are recognized via Enswers’ technology to return interactive features that enhance viewer experience.

A recent example of how Enswers’ ACR technology was used for Samsung Smart TV was during the commercial break of Superbowl XLVIII. H&M ran a 30-second commercial of David Beckham’s bodywear spring collection and the owners of Samsung Connected TVs watching the commercial were able to purchase products directly from the TV commercials using their remote controls.

Is it realistic to expect consumers to download an app for each and every show? Is that approach scalable for advertisers?

Providing white labeled SDKs is one of Enswers’ biggest advantages against our competition. The technology can not only be embedded on an app for each show but also on the app of the TV network or on an app of individual brand, shopping malls and more. In relation to what the future holds for mobile advertising and mobile commerce, Enswers’ ability to provide cross-platform exposure of advertisers’ brands will be more beneficial than having to engage through a third party app.

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