Mobile Sound Recognition, the Evolution of multi screen TV Measurement

As TV viewing behavior is shifting rapidly from linear to on demand, OTT (over the top) personalized recommendation programming and viewing on multiple devices, TV measurement technologies need to evolve and adapt to fragmented TV audiences. “The gap between accurate measurement and consumer behavior is bigger than ever,” said Linda Yaccarino, chairwoman of advertising sales at NBCUniversal.  Sound Recognition (ACR) on mobile devices can become a key part of the Evolution of TV ratings and Radio ratings.

But how can different TV measurement technologies effectively be combined with ambient sound recognition metrics for precise and transparent TV measurement across media platforms?

Next Gen TV Ratings with Mobile Sound Recognition

Yes, many households still watch TV after dinner until late in the evening. But ‘HOW’ people watch today is changing super-fast. Yes, advertising organizations have been trying to improve methodologies over the years. For instance, taking streaming into account and measure overlap. But are the organizations responsible for national audience measurement (that control the currency of advertising GRP’s) innovating fast enough to today’s changing TV and radio behavior?

I believe that ‘media politics’ and bad choices in technology is holding their current innovation adoption. Not all the big stakeholders have the same interest. TV behavior is changing faster than the industry is adapting new needed measurement technologies. Marketing researchers, TV measurement companies, content providers and media buyers rapidly have to adopt new ways to measure TV behavior, like mobile Sound Recognition for passive TV tracking

Households —or individuals― still consume linear TV over-the-air or via cable. But most viewers also watch through either set-top boxes with tv ad skipping capabilities, smart TV apps (OTT) or through tablets and mobile devices. So if you spend millions on TV ads, can you still rely on the traditional TV ratings in such a changed TV landscape?  We don’t think so either….

Automatic Content Recognition based on Sound Recognition is also used for “Adresssable TV” -like solutions to adapt advertising for today’s TV experiences.

evolving television measurement technology

Passive mobile Sound Recognition validates TV exposure

Beatgrid Media took an entirely new approach to mobile Sound Recognition, to offer the world’s most efficient mobile passive media tracking solution. It continuously matches ambient for second-by-second accurate TV metrics, while Energy Impact on the smartphone is ZERO by iOS & Android standards. Data impact is negligible with 18O kb data per hour. Robustness is unrivalled: working from a pants pocket and with background, without false positives.

How it works?

Panel members install a simple and lightweight app -powered by Beatgrid’s Sound Recognition- that captures sound in the world around them. Sound of the media may come from any device. The app runs in the background of the smartphone or tablet, and passively tracks the media based on ambient sound. It is able to identify Live TV and Radio, DVR or OTT to get the ACTUAL cross media brand exposure with today’s fragmented cross media, multi-screen consumption.
It shows advertisers in real-time where the engaged multiscreen audiences are consuming content to effectively spend the $ millions on advertising.

smartphone tablet laptop gaming

How will it make the GRP’s more accurate?

Traditional panel based measurement and the GRP will continue to make the basis of the TV ad currency, but we believe with the shift on how TV is offered to the audience across so many devices, that a hybrid solution with new technologies like Beatgrid’s PANEL SYNC Sound Recognition, will provide a clear multi-screen audience overview and help TV Ratings evolve with today’s TV behavior.

The traditional panel based TV ratings and the Gross Ratings Point (GRP) must evolve toward to a hybrid Panel-plus-Sound Recognition-Census Data-model that incorporates many of the strengths that come with multi-screen viewership and provide a new world of insights.

Context on the overall viewer behavior, the actual exposure (and not skipped exposure) will become increasingly important as brands, content provider and service providers gain access to actual audience reach and to support the evolution of TV ratings.

Effectiveness of a TV advertising will be measured with more detail and accuracy, to help advertisers and broadcasters with a holistic view of their audiences cross multiple screens.

New opportunities for Marketeers

  • The ‘Holy Grail’ in marketing performance is… Accurate Insights in Media-to-Buying results. Passively collected individual media exposure data enables just that. Marketers can leverage the passive media exposure data by linking those to social media, search or sales performance data. This provides a holistic view on the actual effect of TV and Radio driving brand awareness, brand favorability, brand loyalty and buying intent, to actual sales…. more precise than ever before.


  • Next to real-time cross platform TV ratings, our Sound Recognition based media exposure data can also trigger a mobile survey in-the-moment or just after exposure, for Ad recall, Content Testing, Ad Exposure VS Competitor Exposer.


  • In addition, the data from passively media exposure tracking can also be used for synchronized (or retargeted) online advertising.

Other Innovative Multi screen Measurement companies.

ComScore is one of those companies that is innovating very aggressively in this area. It recently announced a partnership with Adobe to Deliver Seamless Cross-Platform Audience Insight. As a result, broadcasters and advertisers will have a better idea of who’s watching and when, and the impact of a program or ad on individual viewers. Most importantly, it will allow marketers to tailor more personal ad experiences. And with all the real-time data at their fingertips, they will be able to optimize their campaigns on the fly.

But comScore also merged with Rentrak; the two companies specialize in the measurement of cross media consumption. They are likely to compete with Nielsen to offer TV measurement data that can form the backbone of deals struck between broadcaster media outlets and their advertisers.

The deal folds Rentrak, which measures video-on-demand, movie box-office and set-top box data that tell how people watch TV, within comScore, which measures consumer web activity. Executives from the company said they will move quickly to offer advertisers a way to gauge how viewers consume video entertainment, no matter whether they use a movie screen, TV, desktop computer or mobile device.

However, mobile Sound Recognition —to validate exposure through the sounds around the consumer’s smartphone rather than only viewing on the smartphone itself— is not yet part of their technology set. This leaves out of the opportunity of added precision of cross screen TV measurement.

multi device sound recognition


Presently, there are no common methodologies for measuring over-the-top viewing…  Beatgrid Media also sees a big opportunity there.

Expect to see more new product innovation in this area from the industry and also new innovative product releases from Beatgrid Media in their journey to offer the world’s most powerful ACR Sound recognition for today’s TV & Radio measurement without compromising consumer privacy.

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