Hybrid TV opens big-data window for free-to-air TV | Broadcast | News | Rapid TV News
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Building on the exponential growth of data generated by each connected user, free-to-air (FTA) services are preparing to improve audience knowledge through the HbbTV standard.

maws hbbtv"Hybrid television opens a whole new game for television: big data management. So far, TV has measured its audience through small panels of data. That has changed,” pointed out Matthew Huntington, CTO, Freesat, during the HbbTV Symposium, which was held in Madrid this week.

“HbbTV is a goldmine of data. For the first time, the media industry has a back channel to access data about the individual user,” said Jordi Gilabert, founder and CEO of Konodrac, a business intelligence company.

"We are now able to know how often each person connects to a network and how long they are watching a program, we can know who they are and if they are coming back to the same channel,” he added. “This way, we can offer high-level audience segmentation, thus enabling the TV industry to deliver personaliseed services.”

As representative of the free-to-air industry already using HbbTV, Francesc Mas, project manager at the Corporació Catalana de Mitjans Audiovisuals, explained that the industry is being forced to make data-driven decision as the “audience of many has become an audience of one.”

Through this hybrid technology, individualised data of each customer can be gathered by FTA operators and broadcasters, something that was before exclusive to some pay-TV operators through the set-top boxes.

"In order to deliver the most appropriate and interesting content for each of our viewers, the best we can do it’s to get to know their interests in depth,” concluded Francesc Mas. "Through hybrid TV, we get to know them in great detail and in real time."