UK-based big data video analytics firm Big Sofa has a new solution called Video Observer, which uses automated technology to analyse in-home and in-store behaviour captured 'anywhere in the world, at scale and in near real time'.
The firm - in which Ipsos became an investor in March this year - says its new approach offers 'genuinely consumer-centric ways' of seeing and understanding lives and behaviour in real-time, and is already being used by some of its clients. The solution uses a hybrid AI approach to turn unstructured behavioural data into quantifiable visual data, 'without losing the full richness of the qualitative content'.
Cameras - fixed or wearable - are monitored and maintained remotely by Big Sofa, and feed data to multiple locations, obscuring faces and personal data to ensure compliance. Non-relevant content is 'screened and scrubbed' using the above hybrid approach (human and AI). The result is 'mass qualitative analysis of moments, sequences and context that simply cannot be accessed through questioning'.
Analysis can include new longitudinal techniques that observe lives over weeks and months, and over a larger scale; and new data points which quantify behaviour in terms of durations and incidences.
CTO Hugh Reid comments: 'We realised that video capture in real world environments was cumbersome, both from a practical and a compliance point of view. A typical chain of custody for potentially sensitive data might span several agents, couriers, hard drives, laptops, cloud providers and the respondents themselves; and at every step there was the risk of data being lost or left exposed, or encountering the kind of technical issues that typically plague video uploads. Because clients were telling us that in situ behavioural video was invaluable, we re-doubled our efforts to find a smart capture/upload solution. The key to it was to simplify the whole process by creating a camera kit to facilitate a stream of video/audio/image/data file uploads direct from the camera or SD card into our dedicated storage platform using secure connections, crucially without exposing those cameras to the public internet'.
Home page: www.bigsofa.co.uk .
All articles 2006-19 written and edited by Mel Crowther and/or Nick Thomas.