Verimatrix takes analytics tilt at Conviva

Just after we went to press last week the embargo was lifted on the Verimatrix news that it had bought a new device side analytics piece from UK audience measurement player Genius Digital.

It marks the first step into device based analytics software, which allows a whole new dimension of data to be collected by the US security specialist. Genius Digital acquired the MiriMon software assets from Miriface out of bankruptcy in 2012. It included some key patents awarded in 2011, on how it measures service delivery parameters in a remote device, such as a set top or a video playing smartphone.

The system provides data back to a Network Operations Center for analysis and presentation. The patent talked about gathering, processing and presenting a vast amount of data when monitoring a large population of multimedia devices on a network.

Verimatrix has naturally emphasized the security element of this story and has its own Verspective Intelligence Centre, which derives analytics in a cloud based server, from requests witnessed for security keys. It talks about this new analytics intelligence being delivered back to base securely, by using its own encryption.

Faultline Online Reporter has always talked about analytics which either tell you what asset was requested, those which tell you if it traversed a network intact (or a CDN), and those on the device which tell you what arrived, when and if it is was in good condition. We have always maintained that having all three is best, but if you only have one of these, it is the on device element which is the most valuable, providing proof of Quality of Experience. Otherwise an operator can sit there believing all is right with the world, while his customers churn in droves for an appalling experience.

The company that has the market lead in this nascent market is US company Conviva, which raised $40 million last week to extend this lead to the rest of the world. Conviva is known for its design wins at such places as ESPN, Sky, HBO, Time Warner Cable, Liberty Global, CBS, NBC, The BCC, Dish, DirecTV, Crackle Telefonica, Viaplay and Bell Media.

The first thing we asked Verimatrix President Steve Oetegenn, when we discussed this was, “You’re going after Conviva?”
“You said it,” he replied.

The double sided approach, listing what content was requested from examining security license requests, and an onboard QoE measure, which tell you both how it arrived and how well it played, and how well the apps behaved, is covering both sides of the coin. Only network operators can also gain additional insights from their networks or CDNs and another CDN load balance expert, Cedexis, is also threatening to join the QoE debate, from this angle.

“We have picked up a team of 15 people based in Bristol in the UK, and it gives us data on set tops but also on any device which video runs on. MiriMon can give us data on how the OS is performing, as well as what the video player is up to,” said Oetegenn.

“Currently MiriMon is rolled out to 5 clients, one in Latin America, 2 in Europe and 2 in Asia, and to 100,000s of devices. We have our own Viewright client on over 100 million devices, and we can roll this out, with our customers’ permission, as part of that client, in the next update,” said Oetegenn.

If people were unsure of the idea of video analytics from security license requests, they can’t be clearer that the analytics business is likely at least as big as content security in its own right and Verimatrix has gone for over a decade focused entirely on security, but can now find multiple ways into clients.

MiriMon has already been integrated into Verimatrix Verspective Operator Analytics suite and ViewRightUltra downloadable app packages and it had partnered with Genius Digital at some operators already. The acquisition enables a closer alignment with Verspective and provides Verimatrix with full control over the roadmaps for the core data collection and service dashboard displays.

A company statement said, “The Verspective client data collection technology, at the heart of this acquisition, enables a secure source of return path data for both linear and adaptive bitrate (ABR) services to a scalable data collection resource that can either be cloud-based, virtualized or server-hosted. Combining all this data yields viewer insights which help operators reduce subscriber churn and create new revenue streams.”