Wyplay is one of those companies, quite widespread in the Aix Marseille metropolis, which acquired in a few years (about ten for them) a rather impressive technological expertise allowing them to be recognized as a global reference actor.
On the occasion of their first participation in the Mobile World Congress, the massive Barcelona-based mobile tradeshow, I interviewed Dominique Feral, their marketing director, to talk about technological innovation.
Phocea Tech: Wyplay offers pay TV operators (Canal +, SFR, Sky, Dish, …) a TV software solution, why are you going to the Barcelona mobile show?
Dominique Feral: First of all, because all our customers today have a mobile offer. And most have made the choice to provide a consistent experience to their users: what is important to them is the subscriber, not the device.
We are coming from the decoder but, as of 2011-2012, we started to develop operator side features. This is for example the case of the multi-profile: when an operator signs a domestic subscription, it knows that it actually signs with several different people using various devices.
The smartphone is unique to each user. The tablet or the PC have instead a family use. And we can add others, the game console for example. Our service must be able to offer content recommendations or targeted advertising, depending on the person targeted.
Phocea Tech: What will you present at the MWC?
Dominique Feral: It is a first participation for us, we go there largely to see. We will show the products we launched recently, such as the latest Canal + decoder or a new decoder coming out in South America. We will also present our offers for Android TV.
Phocea Tech: The decoder of tomorrow will be a Google decoder?
Dominique Feral: We know that some 40 operators will launch on 2018 solutions based on Android TV. 40 out of 650 global operators, it’s not huge, it’s still a test. Especially since they use it as an alternative solution. And then, in television, the big networks are strong actors, for them it’s out of question to join Google.
An Open Environment
Technologically, it means replacing the decoders’ Linux OS with a TV version of Android developed by Google. What we have done is we put into an application all our expertise in television, security, DRM, … and adapting the application to be used with a remote control. Deployment is very simple, you just need to upload the application. Moreover, it remains an open environment since Google has made the Android TV code open source.
Phocea Tech: 5G will be one of the big topics of Barcelona, what impact can it have on your activities?
Dominique Feral: A positive impact, it will enable emerging countries, India, South America, to more easily have connected TV coverage without the need to deploy a wired network. Technologically, it’s neutral for us, especially since 5G does not introduce latency.
Phocea Tech: Thinking about the vast volumes of data you are dealing with, are you experimenting machine learning?
Dominique Feral: Yes, we are at the stage of the POC. What we are trying to do is to detect in advance the user profile who would be willing to leave an operator. We will have a product in the year.
[Version française: « Une quarantaine d’opérateurs TV vont lancer des solutions Android TV »]