As more and more folks cut the cable, install DVR services, and go mobile with their viewing, on demand video becomes more prevalent. With that, the way we surf and search for content must change. The model switches from browsing to purposeful search, but as newer disruptive companies like Netflix and Hulu prove, personalized recommendation-based content gets much better results.
But that technology — or rather, that model — must eventually migrate into online video and basic cable. DigitalSmiths, a company we spoke to in Durham, NC, wants to be the ones that pioneer it. The startup created a platform that makes any video provider’s content searchable and powered by a recommendation engine.
According to the founders, DigitalSmiths is already working behind the scenes on plenty of the video we watch today, and we should see more and more of it as further deals are signed. The service makes recommendations based on individual users’ personalities, but it also filters the best recommendation if mom, dad, and little kid sit down, without automatically skewing toward Barney.
DigitalSmiths is in a relatively good position, considering the way that media consumption behavior is changing so rapidly. Whether it’s cutting the cable or going mobile, users are changing, and so follows the industry. Luckily for DigitalSmiths, the technology offered is more of a platform and works across multiple formats, allowing the company to sell to telcos, Internet video providers, cable and satellite companies, and TV and movie studios. So no matter what happens, they have a foot in the door.
DigitalSmiths has raised $30 million to date in a total of three funding rounds.