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BARC ropes in 250 channels, starts seeding meters for testing

MUMBAI: BARC India, the joint industry body tasked with designing, commissioning, supervising and owning an alternative television audience measurement system, has started seeding BAR-o-meters for testing purposes.

“Test meters are already in the field,” BARC India CEO Partho Dasgupta said.

Meanwhile, in its update, BARC said that more than 250 channels have already ordered for watermarking embedders and about a half of these are already installed. “Field testing of the meters is underway for homologating them to Indian conditions,” it said.

Incidentally, the BAR-o-meters are assembled in India and at a fraction of the cost of other global suppliers. “We have almost all the major networks signed with us. We have ordered for 25,000 BAR-o-meters which are all locally manufactured. The cost is one-fifth or one-sixth of what global players were asking in their tenders,” sources said.

BARC India has closed deals with 26 vendor partners across 12 processes involved in the broadcast measurement system, who will contribute to the different moving parts of the system. Notable among them are Intel (chipmaker), Hansa (research for baseline study), Mediametrie (technology partner), Civolution (owner of watermarking technology), Markdata (graphic user interphase), Magic9Media (design quality and analytics).

Sources inform that the baseline study data was received by BARC last week and it has already started the process to deploy 25,000 meters in 22,000 households.

“This will be the largest such audience measurement system globally with cutting-edge technology. This requires serious technology and process handshakes all over and then testing. All this is currently underway,” BARC said.