Monday, November 21, 2011

Microsoft Acquires VideoSurf for Content Discovery Technology

Microsoft has acquired VideoSurf, a start-up based in San Mateo, California, that scans videos to make it easier for users to search, discover and watch online videos. Financial terms were not disclosed.

VideoSurf developed patent-pending computer vision algorithms and a web crawler bot for searching, indexing and aggregating video content across the web.

Microsoft said it plans to integrate this technology across its entertainment platform to augment the Xbox 360 ecosystem and evolve search and discovery of entertainment content on Xbox LIVE.

"VideoSurf's content analytics technology will enhance the search and discovery of entertainment content across our platform," said Alex Garden, director of Xbox LIVE for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. "This holiday we will launch voice search across our entertainment partners on Xbox LIVE. Over time, as we integrate VideoSurf's technology into our system, we are excited about the potential to have content tagged in real time to increase the speed and relevance of the search results."

  • Microsoft unveiled its Xbox 360 online entertainment service boasting content and support from nearly 40 leading TV partners, including Bravo, Comcast, HBO GO, Verizon FiOS and Syfy in the U.S.; BBC in the U.K., Telef√≥nica in Spain; Rogers On Demand in Canada; Televisa in Mexico; ZDF in Germany; and MediaSet in Italy. Content providers already on the Xbox include AT&T, Netflix and Hulu Plus in the U.S., TELUS in Canada, BSkyB in the U.K., Canal+ in France, Vodafone Portugal, VimpelCom in Russia, and FOXTEL in Australia.

  • In April 2011, Videosurf for its video discovery technology. VideoSurf holds a patent for a technology that analyzes all frames within a video to visually identify prominent objects at a speed not previously possible. This analysis occurs 10 times faster than the speed of video playback and enables VideoSurf to know more about the video content. The company said it now has over 20 million unique users per month searching for video content. The new funding came from Pitango Venture Capital.

  • VideoSurf's founders include Lior Delgo, Professor Achi Brandt, Dr. Eitan Sharon, and Shai Deljo.

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