New York — In a surprising victory for Britain’s popular video search outfit Blinkx–that has won the right to power AOL’s video search. Internet leader AOL announced Monday that it has forged alliance with Blinkx, to replace Truveo as AOL’s video search feature, briefly spiking its shares this morning following the announcement.
Although unlike YouTube, AOL is one of the largest video hubs on the Web, touting around 450 million video views per month according to comScore. The company said that it will also integrate Blinkx’s 35 million hours of content into its search engine as well.
“This is certainly one of our most vital distribution deals — up there with AOL.com,” said Suranga Chandratillake, blinkx founder and CEO.
This collaboration is a huge win for Blinkx, because along with the new audience reach it brings us, we now have access to all of AOL’s video content — a significant, and very high quality library, said a Blinkx representative in a statement to VatorNews.
As per the latest deal, Blinkx said it will also merge AOL’s premium videos in its own search engine. (Apparently, that will include TCTV videos, since we are owned by AOL). Besides, Blinkx has its own search engine, as well, which attracts 55 million US viewers per month. AOL’s video properties are viewed by about 40 million unique viewers (comScore), so the deal could significantly expand Blinkx’s reach.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
However, Blinkx maintains that its search technology is much better than Google’s. “Unlike Google, Blinkx was created from the ground up to search rich media, not text,” said the Binkx representative in a statement.
“Moreover, Blinkx’s core objective is to bring consumers the most relevant video results, from content partners all across the Web, whether that source is a media giant like Bloomberg, or a smaller, independent publisher like CelebTV or Howdini,” continued the Blinkx representative. “Blinkx is not a Walled Garden–our technology crawls the entire Web to find the best video results, wherever they are hosted on the Internet.”
However, it seems as Blinkx will continue to operate as an independent site and that AOL will be unified into their site. No doubt AOL is trying to replicate the nigh unbeatable search-video one-two punch represented in the acquisition of YouTube by Google.
“Blinkx pioneered video search on the Internet, conceptualizing an engine based on technology that was visualize at Cambridge University, enhanced by $150M in R&D over 12 years, and is now protected by 111 patents,” said the Blinkx representative. “We see this as a win-win for everyone.”
“Because blinkx technology understands what is occurring in the video world itself — through visual analysis and speech recognition — we are better able to place relevant, targeted advertising in the content,” Chandratillake added. “The more effective the ad is, the better the monetization rate is for publishers.”
Despite global economic disturbances, Blinkx recently reported that advertiser demand was as strong as ever. The company posted strong revenue growth for its fiscal first half, while pretax profits fell on costs related to a recent acquisition.
Moving on, AOL’s announcement was brief and to the point, but one of the few things it mentioned in particular was that its search integrates a “Safe Search” feature, which can be set to block minors from adult-oriented content.
Until recently, AOLs’ video search was powered by Truveo, which it acquired back in 2006 for $50 million. Truveo reportedly will be shuttered, though this is not confirmed by either company.