NEWS25 September 2018

Barb starts multi-screen audience reporting

Innovations Media News UK

UK – Barb has released TV viewing figures across multiple devices for the first time today – first stage of the delayed delivery of Project Dovetail.

Watching TV on tablet_crop

Barb will produce daily viewing figures which break down the number of people watching television programmes on four screens: TV sets, tablets, PCs and smartphones.

Project Dovetail was established in 2013 in recognition of the changing viewing habits of the UK audience and the need to find a system to accurately measure programme watching beyond the traditional TV set.  

In 2017, Kantar Media’s fusion methodology was selected by Barb for the reporting.  

Barb said that the complexity of this project means the initiative is being launched in three stages – the first stage, launched today, is programme average audiences. These figures show the number of people watching programmes across each of the four screens and will be published eight days after transmission.  There will be back-dated figures for programmes broadcast from 27th August onwards (multiple-screen programme viewing figures will not be available prior to this date).

The second stage, multiple-screen reach and time spent viewing, will report the extent to which tablets and PCs increase the number of viewers and average weekly viewing time for Barb-reported channels. The launch date for this stage has not been announced.

The third – and final – stage will be multiple-screen advertising campaign performance. It is still being developed and the delivery date is also unknown. 

In addition, Barb has published a white paper Multiple-screen viewing: An introduction to how people watch television across four screens which includes multiple-screen viewing figures for some of the most popular programmes of the summer such as Love Island and the World Cup.

Justin Sampson, Barb’s chief executive, said: “Today we reach another milestone in the delivery of Project Dovetail, which is designed to meet industry expectations for a trusted cross-platform audience currency.

“This is an ambitious project, as there are many challenges in delivering multiple-screen audience figures to the rigorous standards expected of a joint industry currency such as Barb.

“Three critical ingredients enable us to extend our gold standard to cover viewing on tablets, PCs and smartphones. We have representative, observational data that shows how people watch on different devices. We also have an independently-collected, census-level count of viewing to BVOD services. And we have smart algorithms that fuel the day-to-day integration of these two high-quality, complementary data sources.”