Along with Photoshop Touch for iPad 2, Adobe today officially announced ‘Primetime’ this morning.  Primetime is a mashup of its video  publishing, analytics and advertising platforms which aims to provide end to end video solutions for video publishers.  Viewers on all four major platforms: Windows, Mac, iOS and Android will be able to use the output and Adobe specifically mentions that it will work on Apple’s native video, without requiring any tricks.

Video and release follows:

We are excited to announce Project Primetime, Adobe’s integrated video technology platform to enable smooth, TV-like experiences for ad-supported videos across Web-connected devices.

Primetime creates a single workflow for premium video publishers and media companies that interconnects Adobe streaming technologies, content protection, analytics and optimization with the recently acquired Auditude video advertising platform.

By integrating content publishing, advertising, and analytics – video publishers will be able to give consumers a superior viewing experience through seamless dynamic ad insertion into any content type, whether linear, live or on-demand across Web-connected devices. Adobe Digital Marketing Suite is integral to Primetime, ensuring that media companies are able to combine consumption and revenue data to increase the relevance of their content and ads.

The Industry Needs Integrated Video Solution to Bring Content and Ad Dollars Online

The adoption of web-enabled devices by consumers over the past few years has been staggering.  Between desktop computers, tablets, smart phones, game consoles, and SmartTVs, consumers have at their fingertips billions of devices that can deliver media experiences over the Internet.

And, advertisers have long shown their desire to reach audiences in engaging experiences like video.  The “offline” TV advertising market will be $200+ B by 2014.  Within online advertising, advertisers want to shift spending video.  A recent eMarketer report (June 2011) forecasts video growing from about 14% to over 32% of total digital advertising spending by 2015, taking market share from both banner and rich media advertising.

The audience is enabled, the advertiser is interested – so why is less than 5% of professionally produced content available online?

1. The user experience for audiences viewing video ads today is inferior to television.  I don’t know about you – but my TV attached to my set top box doesn’t buffer between the programming and the ads.  But, with online video, the processing required to load client heavy advertising plug-ins often triggers that flickering circle. And who wants to wait for an ad to buffer?  No one – and that’s a problem for viewers, publishers and advertisers alike.

Primetime eliminates the need for heavy advertising plug-ins by moving more of the processing to the cloud, which means no more flickering circles waiting for ads to load, whether you’re on a desktop or mobile device. It feels like what you see on TV, but on any device.

2. Connected devices are fragmented.  My set top box could connect to any TV and playback the same content stream from my PayTV provider.  But online the opposite is true.  Every device platform supports largely different technology – making it complex and expensive for publishers to build video experiences for every device.  Today, publishers have to make hard tradeoffs on which devices to support – which reduces their audience size and revenue potential

Primetime enables a single workflow to reach the majority of web-enabled device platforms, whether smartphone, tablet, game console, desktop or SmartTV.

3. Inserting ads into connected devices is hard.   Connected device platforms have introduced new technologies and workflows for streaming video content – where ad insertion has not been well defined.  Creating scalable models for inserting ads into connected devices is exacerbated by the lower processing power of connected devices, versus desktop computers.

Primetime enables both server-side and client-side integrations of content and ads that allow for efficient and scalable delivery of monetizable video content.

4. Ad and content analytics are siloed.  Video publishers typically use separate systems (usually from different companies) to measure how their audiences engaged with content from how their audiences engaged with ads.  This impairs visibility into the correlation between audience engagement with content and ad revenue.

Primetime combines site-side analytics from Adobe’s Digital Marketing Suite with ad analytics from Auditude to provide revenue-base analytics used to increase revenue and engagement.

In short – through an integrated content and advertising workflow and better data-driven monetization, Project Primetime will empower the content and ad ecosystem, which will make it possible for more content to flow online.

Primetime Highlights

As part of the first phase of Primetime, we are showcasing Primetime Highlights, which enables video publishers to create and publish live event highlights, with ads, in minutes.

Event highlights are a great way to show the power of integrating video publishing and advertising.  First, viewers only watch highlights for a few hours after events occur.  If you can’t quickly publish and monetize a highlight, it’s not worth creating it.  Second, user experience really matters with short form content – viewers are more likely to abandon if there is buffering, etc.

How does it work?  We’ve created a highlight tool that is tightly integrated with the Auditude ad platform.  The highlight tool lets you set the in and out points of the clip, and add metadata like title, genre, etc.  Once you hit publish, the Auditude platform automatically knows that ad inventory is available, and can target ads based on the metadata entered in the highlight tool.  To make this even easier to implement, we are also providing a full video player*.

Here’s a video of how it works:

After acquiring Auditude about three months ago, we are thrilled to be bringing Primetime to market to accelerate online video, starting with Primetime Highlights.  Expect us to be equally aggressive in supporting 24×7 linear, on-demand, and live with more announcements coming throughout 2012.

Check back tomorrow for Jens Loeffler’s take on our Adobe Access support for iOS.  And, for more insight into our MPEG-DASH announcement, see Kevin Towes’ blog post here.

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