Comcast Technology Solutions is opening up Video AI technology used by Comcast Cable and Sky as a new software-as-a-service (SaaS).
The technology is being made available to the broader media and entertainment industry as a fully managed, 24×7 service. Customers can use VideoAI to automatically analyse their video assets to identify and tag key onscreen moments (hard cuts, black frames, transitions, etc.); audio events (silence, specific sounds, etc), and much more to support enhanced understanding of video content.
“This has been an ongoing process for Comcast, Sky and NBC,” said Bart Spriester, Vice President and General Manager of Content and Streaming Providers Suite for Comcast Technology Solutions in a Broadband TV News interview. “It started with some of the acquisitions that we’ve done over the past several years, and it also incorporated a lot of in-house technology. And the features that you’ve seen are the ones that we’re launching here. So this is the metadata segmentation for dynamic ad insertion. This is the segmentation detection, such as the intro, the credit rules and auto chapterings.”
Spriester said that Sky had used the Video AI technology to provide instant on-screen highlight reels as part of its cricket coverage. “As sporting events are happening instantaneously, the AI technology can build highlight reels and then deposit them on your system.”
The AI can also be applied to advertising, providing viewers with commercials based on the advertising they’ve just seen. “We’ve had customers come to us and say, hey, here’s our problem with the metadata. Can you figure out if it’s a BMW ad in this car chase? And we would like to send the ad decision engine a request that says, hey, we need a 15 second ad for BMW right after this car chase. And our detectors absolutely can. So, yeah, it’s pretty powerful.”
Spriester described this as the next level from Sky AdSmart that provides relevant advertising based on specified demographics. “Ad Smart is a great product and it is used and will continue to be used heavily but this is really adding some personalized intelligence to advanced advertising.”
VideoAI can be used with or without the Comcast Technology Solutions Cloud Video Platform and Direct-to-Consumer Suite.