HTML5 and responsive designs

HTML5 and Responsive Design ensures broadcasters can optimise the multiscreen experience whatever the screen size

HTML5 and responsive designs
A recent study led by the Council for Research Excellence, a UK-based organisation specialising in research for the industry, found out that screen size impacts the multiscreen behaviours in a noteworthy way: the smaller the screen, the more likely the end user’s activities are related to what is happening on the primary screen. This creates additional challenges for monetization specialists as a bigger screen also means in-programme advertising is becoming irrelevant and commercial breaks can’t be used to their full potential. This is an issue, but help is at hand: Responsive Design can ensure the viewer experience is optimised on the fly for any screen size.

Responsive Design is a technique aimed at crafting websites and user interfaces (UI) to provide an optimal viewing experience on any screen. It relies heavily on HTML5, which provides the ability to lay out the user interface proportionally and to use CSS3 media queries to adapt to the screen resolution of the display device. For broadcasters and content providers, the global adoption of the h.264 standard within browsers and silicon vendors enables content to be delivered and consumed on mobile devices, even those that don’t support Flash, in appropriate resolutions or to be scaled on-the-fly depending on the device and the available bandwidth.

As consumers come to grips with the idea of using their smartphone or tablet as a universal access and control device for the connected home, ensuring a seamless experience across devices to help speed adoption is crucial, and this is what Responsive Design helps to address. HTML5 offers a simple solution by providing an environment naturally suited to creating content compatible with any device and screen size through Responsive Design’s key component of on-the-fly smart experience scaling. This enables the easy delivery of content on any device, without bespoke development time for each screen size.

A key aim of using Responsive Design is for service providers, content owners and broadcasters to more effectively monetize the video assets they provide to consumers by offering these across a wider range of devices.

Monetization through tracking the consumer so that targeted advertisements or other relevant information services can be offered is often perceived as complicated on a mobile device, typically due to the absence of cookies for persistent storage. Although this means traditional ways of storing customer information cannot be put to use on a mobile device, HTML5 provides various modules to store information about how the consumer interacts with content on a specific device: SessionStorage, which only stores information during a period of time, the ‘session’ opened by the consumer and available until closed; or LocalStorage, which can store information directly on the device.

HTML5 has already become the standard in mobile video content delivery and is fast becoming a standard for multiscreen due to the inherent developer-friendliness of the technology, its existing dominance in mobile, and its many advantages for the TV by allowing a single, branded experience across many devices. In summary, be it for end users or content providers looking for a consistent experience across all devices, or for broadcast specialists looking for efficient ways to monetize the content watched on any screen HTML5, Responsive Design provide broadcasters with the perfect development environment to efficiently develop and launch compelling multiscreen experiences.

Published by Robert Guest

Robert is VP Product and Content at ACCESS Europe, with a focus on HTML5 platforms and media sharing solutions, including industry specific extensions such as HbbTV and W3C Vehicle APIs, so that ACCESS customers can deploy standards based state of the art products. He has been involved in projects with major customers in both automotive and TV and ensures a customer focused development strategy for ACCESS. His role involves working with telcos, middleware suppliers, STB OEMS, automotive tier 1s and automotive OEMS to ensure that ACCESS products deliver the features needed in these fast evolving markets.

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