TiVo Combines Personalized Content Discovery With Voice Search

TiVo and Rovi completed their merger almost a year ago, but the companies are still combining and integrating technologies that entered from both sides.

Along those lines, TiVo has introduced the Personalized Content Discovery platform, a product that weaves in tech and product from Digitalsmiths (acquired by TiVo in 2014) and Veveo, a voice search startup acquired by Rovi in 2014.

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TiVo has “created one full stack from those products,” Pratik Patel, director of product management, advanced search and recommendations at TiVo, said.

He added that Digitalsmiths had added the concept of customization for search providers in the form of business rules that could, for example, enable search results to prioritize free VOD or transactional VOD options.  TiVo said the platform is capable of searching across content catalogs available to the consumer, including linear TV, VOD, and OTT fare.

To surface more content, the system also supports a conversational search approach that, for example, would pull results when a viewer tells it to “Show me something funny,” “Find movies with  Tom Hanks,” or ask it to locate nostalgic movies from the ‘80s or to find a specific football game that will be shown on TV.

TiVo said the resulting platform will enable video operators to integrate search, recommendations and analytics with voice.

TiVo hasn’t announced how the newly integrated platform will be introduced in its retail products as well as those that are distributed by TiVo’s MVPD partners. More detail is expected to be shared this fall.  In the meantime, ZatzNotFunny reported Monday that recent FCC filings alongside “industry chatter” indicate that TiVo is nearing the launch of a retail voice remote.  He had reported earlier that TiVo had also submitted some trademark requests for “Vox”-branded products that could potentially use voice search capabilities.

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Regardless of the exact timing, the move will enable TiVo to add a voice search function that’s already offered today from MVPDs such as Comcast (for X1), DirecTV and Dish Network, whose initial voice remote, launched last year, already uses TiVo/Rovi technology.