Yesterday at IBC, Emma Hosgood caught up with Stefan Jenzowsky (Head of Business Unit Media, Siemens Convergence Creators), to hear more about the freshly launched OTT SWIPE UX as a Service – and see it in action…
Emma Hosgood: Can you tell our readers a little bit about your new product?
Stefan Jenzowsky: It’s called OTT SWIPE UX as a Service, we’re launching it at IBC, and what it basically does is enable any existing over the top or IPTV provider, any service that already exists, to adopt the Swipe user experience and bring that onto that platform within four weeks. (Ready-made APIs and SDKs enable very quick implementation.) The core of the user experience is that you can basically take any handheld, let’s say an iPad, put it in front of any TV, or any game station, and with a simple flick of your finger, swipe over the content to the main screen.
I’ve just seen a demo. It’s cool!
It’s a very cool user experience. It enables you to take any content you were watching on your phone, swipe it over, or swipe it down – which is basically you’re watching something on your main screen and want to take with you on your personal device.
From the empirical data that we have, we know that, once the Swipe feature is enabled, more people are actually using the phone or the tablet for navigation than the remote control. So the predominant way of selecting and navigating shifts to your personal device. This is also due to the fact that you can now have personalised recommendations on your phone or on your tablet. So my son, my wife, my daughter will get other recommendations from me, being in the same room in front of the same TV.
This changes the whole game because then I get my own user interface, I get my own movies to watch, I get my own channel line-up. It also means that, in theory, I could go to a neighbour, take my subscriptions with me, and use it on their TV – I just bring up the app and then fire it over, because this handheld device contains my personal subscription levels.
I think it is known by all of us that there is far too much choice out there. If I come home tonight, I’ll probably have the choice of about 25,000 movies that I could watch tonight, and probably more than 200 channels. So, given that, navigation and discovery – especially discovery – become the primary big things that we have to solve in our industry. And for this I think we have to give recommendations on the personal device.
You are also showing “receiver clients” at IBC – what are they doing?
This is a quite novel concept we are pioneering. A receiver client will broaden the range of devices served for any OTT service. We have produced receiver clients for a lot of TV brands like Samsung, LG, Panasonic, but also for Game Consoles like Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation. A receiver client is quite simple and inexpensive, as it can just receive the Swipe-command. And as it has no own user interface. It will just play anything you throw at it via our Swipe UX service, thereby broadening the scope of devices served by your service.
How have you found IBC?
It’s been a very entertaining experience. It is becoming more and more evident to me that over the top technologies may be, over the long term, replacing traditional broadcasting technologies, as over the top delivers the same or even better user experiences, based on IP technologies, instead of basing it on technologies that were traditionally used for broadcasting.
That basically means that now in television the same is happening as happened in other industries. If you look at Voice over IP – telephony came from specialist industries and specialist technologies, to become very much an IP based service, an IP based application: either it’s over the top when it would be something like Skype, or inside telecommunication networks. And maybe video transmission – what we call ‘television’ – be it linear or non-linear, could be going the same way.
At IBC? See it for yourself at Stand 14.A30.