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Unedited press release follows:
Gracenote Acquires Bulldog United to Enhance its Smart TV Platforms
Bulldog CEO Don Gordon Joins Gracenote to Spearhead Broadcast Solutions and Business Initiatives
SAN FRANCISCO, June 12, 2012 — TV of Tomorrow Show – Gracenote® today announced it has acquired Bulldog United, a developer of video fingerprinting technology for Smart TVs. This move strengthens Gracenote’s portfolio of Smart TV technologies and will enable the company to incorporate a powerful combination of video fingerprinting technology and its existing audio fingerprinting technology into its Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) platform, Gracenote Entourage™, and other Smart TV products.
Through the acquisition of Bulldog, Gracenote will be able to build on its second-screen initiatives by providing TV manufacturers a means to integrate frame-level video fingerprinting technology directly into the primary screen – the TV set. This will allow next generation Smart TVs to identify movies, TV programs and even commercials from any source—cable and satellite boxes, Blu-ray players or streaming services. After the content is recognized, the Smart TV will then be able to steer viewers to built-in VOD services to view related movies and TV programs, or interact with show specific Apps and advertising promotions.
Historically, the television set has been a display device for content from cable and satellite providers, over-the-air broadcasters and DVD/Blu-ray disc players. The TV could never recognize what type of programming was being displayed to viewers. With Gracenote’s acquisition of Bulldog, TV manufacturers and advertisers will be able to take control of the user experience and create direct dialogue with viewers through built-in Apps and services.
An innovator in the field of interactive television, Bulldog United CEO Don Gordon will join Gracenote as Vice President, Broadcast Solutions. Gordon’s work – ranging from serving as GM and VP of DIVA Systems’ Broadcast Products Division, to various roles with Microsoft TV, and most recently as CTO and COO of ActiveVideo Networks – has resulted in more than 50 issued patents that cover video-on-demand, digital television advertisement insertion and Interactive Program Guide (IPG) technology.
“The integration of Bulldog’s video fingerprinting technology will provide Gracenote with a game changing platform for interactive television,” said Stephen White, president of Gracenote. “Having Don join our team will help us drive innovation and provide TV makers, advertisers and content producers with powerful solutions to drive revenue and build direct relationships with viewing audiences.”
A pioneer in digital media, Gracenote, Inc. provides music and video content and technologies to the world’s hottest entertainment products and brands. The company’s partners in the entertainment community include major music publishers and labels, prominent independents and movie studios and television networks. A wholly owned, independent subsidiary of the Sony Corporation of America (SCA), Gracenote has offices in Tokyo, Munich, Berlin, Seoul, and Taipei with worldwide headquarters in Emeryville, California. For more information, follow us at @GracenoteTweets and www.facebook.com/PoweredbyGracenote