Sky TV, TNS & NDS team up to launch audience measurement service

MUMBAI: Sky Television, New Zealand's pay television company, in conjunction with TNS, the global market information specialist, and NDS, provider of technology solutions for digital pay TV, have developed and launched an audience measurement research service.

According to an official announcement, this measurement system is based on the establishment of a new viewing panel, recruited and managed by TNS, which will initially comprise 6,500 households equipped with digital satellite television. The digital set-top boxes (STB) in these households have been deployed with the NDS Audience Measurement System (AMS) software to collect and analyse viewing data.


A key element of NDS' end-to-end digital broadcasting platform on which Sky Television relies to protect and enhance its pay-TV business, the AMS is capable of securely tracking and reporting many types of digital TV viewing activity.

The data collected from the STB are processed and delivered by TNS to provide insights into how subscribers consume digital satellite television. The system will initially focus on providing robust viewing data for all satellite channels. The service will additionally be able to measure and provide an understanding of enhanced television viewing activity such as electronic program guide (EPG) usage and interactive advertising viewership, adds the release.


Sky Television chief executive officer John Fellet said, "Sky Television broadcasts more than 80 channels, and we continually strive to improve the service to our subscribers. By working with NDS and TNS on the Audience Measurement System, we will be able to further understand our subscribers' viewing habits and therefore provide more of what they want. Furthermore, we will be able to provide our programming partners and advertisers with an understanding of how our subscribers use our service which will aid their strategic planning."

TNS will be responsible for design, recruitment and maintenance of the viewing panel, and processing of viewing data. Analysis of viewing data will be carried out via a bespoke version of InfoSys, TNS' television audience analysis system.

TNS director of TV Audience Measurement Tony Taylor said, "We are delighted to be partnering with Sky in this service. It represents a key milestone in our audience measurement strategy which is leading the way in new digital measurement services and our involvement in the region. TNS is confident that the data will offer real value to Sky in understanding digital TV subscribers as well as providing greater insight on both the programming and advertising sales fronts."

NDS Australia and New Zealand GM Peter Iles said, "NDS Audience Measurement System resides in the subscribers' set-top boxes and enables Sky Television to directly capture viewing data from domestic set-top boxes, without truck rolls and without the cost of additional hardware in the home. Previously, it was not possible to capture viewing behaviour in such depth, but NDS AMS is a downloadable software extension which enables existing settop boxes to provide detailed tracking in selected households."

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