And with recent upgrades to Apple’s tvOS, more device manufacturers are finding the real opportunity is in the operating system, the applications and data – rather than the device itself.
Ashish Chordia, CEO of multiscreen TV targeting company Alphonso, called the deal a “great move” by Samsung and said he fully expects Samsung to pursue ways to verify TV audiences across digital and mobile.
“The market we’re in is not a zero sum game,” he added. “Samsung's entry into the market will be a net positive for Alphonso and others.”
Samsung, however, will have to walk a fine line between user experience and monetization. The smart TV manufacturer began activating tile ads into the menu bar on its home screen last summer, as well as ads within partner apps.
“I fully expect Samsung to launch an Alphonso-like product 'delivering TV audiences' on digital,” Chordia predicted. "They will do it by using automatic content recognition on Samsung TV and marrying that to mobile devices they find on the same network where smart TVs are. Hence they need a DSP to do this.”
At this point, the full extent to which TV companies collect viewership data and use it for advertising purposes is unclear. Some smart TV manufacturers, like Vizio, have learned the hard way when tracking is enabled by default.
Data and connectivity, as AdGear told AdExchanger in an interview in 2010, has been a big focus since the company was founded. AdGear billed itself, at that time, as a next-gen ad server.