The Austrian Ministry of Commerce presented the award for F5's "innovative digital TV development" under the ESA funded project EBIDS at the National Multimedia and e-Business awards in Vienna Austria.
The EDIBS (Embedded DIgital Broadcast Services) project began 2003 in order to address the problem for TV providers who lose advertising revenue because viewers fast forward (or skip) advertisements with their digital video recorders; a problem that will only intensify with the current digital television switchover. F5's simple yet unique solution to this involves motivating and rewarding frequent viewers.
|EDIBS makes it possible to piggyback additional content onto any digital television program. A typical configuration of the system works on any common set-top box (image right). Software collects the content and records data on viewing habits such as whether the viewer has not changed channels throughout a programme including, for example, commerical breaks.|
|Viewers who have remained tuned in throughout the programme are instantly awarded extra content in the form of, for example, a 'The Making of' type documentary. Not only will viewers benefit from the increased content but television providers can strengthen the customer connection to the channel and lessen negative effects of digital video recorders for advertisers.|
A multitude of customer relationship TV services have already been developed that utilise the EDIBS technology; after market introduction, it has the potential of being as widely used as 'Teletext' or 'Dolby'. Before this can happen however, F5 is still planning to adapt the technology for the wide variety of broadcaster configurations. This includes ongoing development of the EDIBS ECS (Embedded Content Server) prototype (image right).
Harald Hackenberg, owner and managing director of F5 said after the awards ceremony: "The national and above all international reverberations of our development are overwhelming, something we had not expected at the beginning."
ESA Telecom financed the development of the project through its Start-up Projects Initiative. F5 will give a presentation and a full demonstration of the EBIDS solution at the upcoming Telecommunications Applications Workshop in Frascati Italy on 10 - 11 November.
To read more about EBIDS click under Related Links on the right of this page.