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Amagi’s patented watermark technology

As TV networks expand in newer markets, there is a greater need to localize content and manage local broadcast regulations. However, the traditional method of adding new satellite feeds for each region may not be the answer with growing number of feeds, which could result in inflating costs. Using replacement triggers such as SCTE35, and DTMF cue tones can also have it’s own set of challenges.

Challenges for localizing broadcast content

  • Expensive satellite bandwidth and additional resource costs
  • Manual insertion of replacement triggers vulnerable to human errors
  • Increasing complexity with replacement triggers managed as a separate workflow
  • Unsuitable for dynamic ad insertion in live sports

How Amagi’s patented Watermark technology can help TV networks localize

Amagi’s watermark technology can simplify the content localization workflow using automation. The technology enables TV networks to insert local ads or content in a programmatic, rule-based approach. No additional infrastructure is needed to ensure frame-accurate content replacement on each local headend. By using watermark, it’s possible to expand the ad inventory, manage content rights obligation, and address local viewer preferences without adding new satellite feeds. The technology not only helps in controlling costs, but also in boosting revenues with targeted advertising.

How it works

Amagi Watermark: Inaudible, in-band DPI marker

Amagi’s patented watermark technique is an in-band DPI marker that is inserted into the master content. The broadcaster plays the master content like any other content scheduled in the playlist. The watermark carries metadata for content replacement, and is identified by the content insertion servers or enhanced IRDs installed at operator headends.

Thus, the workflow at the broadcaster is greatly simplified. This method ensures that any SCTE 35 or DTMF trigger meant for a downstream operator remains untouched.

Sports-ready: Taking abrupt ad-breaks on live sports broadcast

Localizing ad insertions during live sports broadcast can be tricky due to the dynamic nature of live events. For example, a cricket match could be interrupted abruptly due to injury to a player. Manually switching to an ad for each local headend in this event requires additional resources, and may not guarantee accurate ad-breaks. Traditional replacement triggers such as DTMF cue tones, and SCTE35 are difficult to integrate in a live broadcast scenario, and could lead to ad drops. On the other hand, Amagi Watermark can be deployed to manage abrupt ad-breaks with ease. Using a simple workflow, all assets including bumpers can be watermarked. At the time of an abrupt breakout scenario the bumper could be played that can be detected by lRDs at local headends. As soon as the bumper is detected, IRDs can play the local ads sent in advance, using satellite trickle bandwidth or IP.

Benefits of Watermark technology

  • Rule-based ad-scheduling, eliminating manual marking of each ad
  • Easy integration with no changes required to existing workflow
  • Frame-accurate ad replacement
  • Granular level of control on ad replacement
  • Dynamic, sports-ready ad replacement capable of handling abrupt ad breaks
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