Gracenote streaming catalogs power universal content search and discovery

Gracenote, the metadata and content solutions unit of Nielsen, has created streaming video program availability datasets that are meant to help providers address the consumer challenge of finding where, when and how to watch content across different services, as well as help drive tune-in.

The product has three main catalogs, which span SVOD TV and movies, live sports events, and linear free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) content availability. They’re targeted at CTV platforms, digital media services, streaming aggregators and MVPD providers, with datasets meant to be integrated into search and discovery functions to enhance the user experience for providers’ subscribers by enabling them to search, find, and access content, on whatever service it might live.

With a buffet of streaming services and content available, and shows and movies regularly shifting from one platform or provider to another, knowing where a program is located and how to watch it at a given time has become a pain point for consumers. Earlier research from Nielsen’s State of Play Report found viewers on average were spending more than 10 minutes to search for content, with 1 in 5 giving up their TV viewing session altogether to do something else when they couldn't find something to watch. And with sports rights increasingly scattered across various providers, sports fans are also feeling the struggle.  

Gracenote’s product pairs programming availability data with normalized program metadata, alongside up-to-date viewing options of where to find the content and deep links – the latter which connect viewers to the TV show episodes, movies or sports events they want with one click.

For example, if a movie is featured on the home screen of a CTV platform or streaming aggregator user interface and the viewer picks the content, the deep link enables immediate video playback to start watching right away. This solves the “take me to watch” use case, according to Gracenote.

The Streaming Video Catalog offers availability information on entertainment content from catalogs of services like Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV+, Disney+ and Netflix. The Streaming Sports Catalog offers the same thing for live sports programming that’s offered on services like ESPN+, DAZN, MLB.TV, and NBC Sports. While the FAST/Streaming Channels data set offers normalized metadata for nearly 2,000 linear FAST channels globally.

“As the entertainment ecosystem continues to evolve, a massive opportunity exists to drive the next iteration of streaming,” said Trent Wheeler, Chief Product Officer at Gracenote, in a statement. “For it to reach its full potential as a channel, streaming needs to deliver better user experiences enabled by search and discovery of all content - TV, movies and live sports - wherever it’s available.”

There are already a number of major CTV platforms and MVPDs that have integrated the Streaming Availability product, according to Gracenote, though deals generally preclude it from naming names. One public customer is European telecom provider Liberty Global, which uses the Gracenote Streaming Video and Streaming Sports Catalogs to power its Horizon platform. The Gracenote product helps Liberty deliver search and discovery of TV, movies, and sports programming from a variety of sources within a single user-centric experience.

There’s also an unnamed “global CTV platform” using the Gracenote Streaming Sports Catalog to power a sports zone experience, which aggregates all available live sports events and sports content within one centralized hub.