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Pearl TV Collaborates with FOX, NBC, and Univision to Test Verance Broadcast Watermarking for Next-Generation Television (Yahoo Finance)

An on-air test is now underway of new digital broadcasting technology that will help broadcasters tailor content to viewers and better measure audience activity.

A consortium of major broadcasters are testing watermarking technology aimed at the IP-based television transmission standard, ATSC 3.0. According to the Pearl TV alliance, it is collaborating with Fox, NBC Connecticut/WVIT, Univision and software maker Verance, maker of the watermarking technology. Pearl said “and on-air test is now underway,” using Verance ’s digital audio watermark embedded in ATSC 1.0 transmissions to conduct the test.

Pearl said watermarking enables “the foundational data protocol that triggers services such as interactivity, personalization and even advanced emergency alerting on televisions and other devices.”

Test locations include Phoenix; Orlando, Fla.; Montgomery, Ala.; and Hartford, Conn.

“We plan to evaluate how the watermark is deployed, how it is retained from transmitter to receiver, and what information can be gleaned from the testing process,” said Anne Schelle, managing director of Pearl TV, a business organization of U.S. broadcast companies.

“The goal is to test how watermarking can be used to power the next-generation TV across various viewing paths and devices,” Schelle said.

According to Nil Shah, CEO of Verance, the company’s software “activates broadband capabilities on broadcast content, providing viewers with advanced features uniformly across devices and platforms. This enables broadcasters to connect with millions of viewers on TV in the personalized, dynamic ways they’re accustomed to online.”

He said the technology is compatible with ATSC 1.0, the transmission standard currently in use, and that it “accelerates certain ATSC 3.0 features, allowing broadcasters to see early benefits while transitioning to ATSC 3.0.”

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