Industry Moves Toward Goal of Standardized, Advanced Ad Products Across a National Footprint
LOUISVILLE, COLO. & NEW YORK – Canoe Ventures LLC and CableLabs announced the issuance of a new draft reference architecture specification called Advanced Advertising 1.0, created to further the development of cable advertising products.
Advanced Advertising 1.0 comprises a set of component specification and standards that, individually, allow cable companies to provide more innovative types of advanced ads, such as interactive advertising, Video on Demand advertising within existing VOD platforms, and advanced forms of addressable advertising. Taken together, the Advanced Advertising specification allows multi-system operators (MSOs) to offer such products with consistent technologies, metrics and interfaces across a national footprint. The Advanced Advertising 1.0 spec was developed and will be maintained by a CableLabs Working Group composed of MSO, Canoe and CableLabs technical leads, with selective input from the vendor community.
“We are pleased to see this specification released,” said Arthur Orduña, Chief Technology Officer of Canoe Ventures, LLC. “In supporting the specifications, MSOs can present a unified package of capabilities, built upon their two-way infrastructure, which advertisers can more easily buy, use and measure. With this development, we’re closer to achieving Canoe’s goal of improved accountability and measurability that marketers expect from digital media.”
Don Dulchinos, Senior Vice President of Advanced Platforms at CableLabs observed, “Advanced Advertising 1.0 is the logical culmination of the work of MSO and vendor specialists who have been developing numerous enabling technologies for advanced advertising over the past several years. And some of this technology also can support individual MSO product offerings in the advertising space.”
Canoe Ventures and CableLabs have been working with MSOs to develop Advanced Advertising 1.0 and will work with the vendor community to deploy these specifications so they can enable networks, and ultimately their advertising clients, to utilize interactive and addressable advertising technologies.
“This specification is critical to ensuring a standard and efficient approach to building out advanced advertising capabilities for Comcast’s systems,” said Tony Werner, CTO of Comcast Cable. “We will look for compliance with Advanced Advertising 1.0 as a key requirement for our advanced advertising vendors.”
“We support the Advanced Advertising 1.0 specification, as it answers the needs and reflects the input of many MSOs today, including Time Warner Cable,” said Mike Lajoie, CTO of Time Warner Cable. “Moving forward, this spec will help ensure a standards-based approach for all new revenue-generating advanced ad products, and will provide a solid foundation as we expand our roster of advanced advertising technology partners.”
“In order to realize the potential of advanced advertising at both the national and the local levels, we must provide a clear, standards-based path for technology and services providers,” said Nomi Bergman, President of Bright House Networks. “This specification work is the first strong, collective step towards building that path, both for Bright House Networks and its partners.”
“Cox has worked with Canoe, CableLabs and our fellow MSOs to create this first draft of the Advanced Advertising 1.0 specification, and we are pleased to support it,” said Chris Bowick, CTO of Cox Communications. “We believe a critical element to the success of advanced advertising is a common foundation that gives us as an industry the ability to scale, take advantage of efficiencies and ultimately create a new market.”
The current version of the spec includes the following component pieces:
a. ETV – A CableLabs specification for interactivity that can be implemented on millions of digital set-top boxes deployed by cable operators. ETV, based on the Enhanced Television Binary Interchange Format or “EBIF,” is part of the OCAP specification so advertising applications written for ETV can run on OCAP (OpenCable Applications Platform) specification, intended to enable developers of interactive television services and applications to design products so that they can run successfully on any cable television system in North America.
b. VOD Metadata 2.0 – A CableLabs specification for descriptive data associated with a package of VOD content, whether a movie or a long-form advertisement. This metadata is used in MSO and programmer VOD systems today, but in the future will assist in the delivery of prospective ad products for the VOD space, or in adding greater addressability to different types of ads.
2. Interfaces: There are currently four interfaces for advanced advertising, targeting EBIF, that are in the early draft phase but will be added to the 1.0 spec
a. Service Measurement Summary Interface (SMSI) – enables MSOs to export information about the execution of a campaign.
b. Interactive Fulfillment Summary Interface (IAF) – provides a means for messaging generated by an interactive application to be exposed to an external entity
c. Interactive Application Messaging Platform (IAM) – provides a critical interface between interoperable applications (apps distributed to more than one MSO) and MSO systems, defining the common form of messages instantiated by interoperable apps and how MSO systems decode them.
d. Campaign Information Package Interface (CIP) – provides information to the MSOs on the configuration of application messaging processing, such as identifiers relevant to the messages
3. Standards: Relevant SCTE standards that the CableLabs Working Group has decided should be supported as part of the Advanced Advertising 1.0 spec
a. SCTE 35 – enables measurement, enhanced applications and ad placement on linear and on-demand content – includes related support from SCTE 30 / 67 / 104
b. SCTE 130 – separates new addressable ad delivery systems from ad decision systems that allow for dynamic ad selection for interactive, linear and on-demand content
There is already strong vendor community support for key components of the Advanced Ad 1.0 spec, such as EBIF and SCTE 130. This was evident at an interoperability event held by CableLabs in November 2008. Fifteen companies demonstrated interoperability among their products based on integration of the SCTE 130 standards with CableLabs ETV/EBIF standards for interactive television and advertising. The participating companies were ARRIS, BIAP, BlackArrow, Concurrent Computer Corporation, Ensequence, Front Porch, INVIDI, Microsoft Advertising, Motorola, OpenTV, Sigma Systems, TANDBERG Television, Part of the Ericsson Group, This Technology, UniSoft Corporation and Visible World.
Canoe Ventures and CableLabs direct interested parties to find and track more information about Advanced Advertising 1.0 at the web site www.advancedadvertising.tv.
Founded in 1988 by members of the cable television industry, Cable Television Laboratories is a non-profit research and development consortium that is dedicated to pursuing new cable telecommunications technologies and to helping its cable operator members integrate those advancements into their business objectives. Cable operators from around the world are members. CableLabs maintains web sites at www.cablelabs.com; www.packetcable.com; www.cablemodem.com; www.cablenet.org; and www.opencable.com. CableLabs®, DOCSIS®, CableHome®, PacketCable™, OpenCable™, OCAP™, CableCARD™, DCAS™, Go2BroadbandSM and CableNET® are marks of Cable Television Laboratories, Inc. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.
About Canoe Ventures
Canoe Ventures LLC is a company founded by the nation’s leading cable operators including Bright House Networks, Cablevision Systems Corporation, Charter Communications, Inc., Comcast Corporation, Cox Communications Inc., and Time Warner Cable. Based in New York City, the company is focused on making cable’s advanced advertising solutions easier to buy, use and measure. www.canoe-ventures.com