TV search 101: searching traditional TV with SnapStream

Several of us from the SnapStream team are in Las Vegas right now at the National Association of Broadcaster’s event (we’re in the south upper hall #SU2707– if you’re here, stop by and say hi). One of the questions we get a lot of is, simply, “What is SnapStream?”

It’s probably fair to assume that many of you here on the blog share this question… so let me answer that question here.

So, what is SnapStream?

You probably search the web every day with search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. SnapStream delivers a similar search experience for traditional TV shows — you know, the stuff you get over-the-air, cable, or satellite. That’s to say, SnapStream makes it possible to search TV shows from ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, ESPN, Comedy Central, CSPAN, or anything on network television.

Here’s an example of the kind of search results that we deliver for traditional television:

How does it work?

SnapStream’s TV search technology uses closed-captioning (that’s included in almost all TV content in the U.S. and Canada, here in the U.S. it’s mandated by the FCC) and program guide data to power it’s TV search engine.

Our customers purchase a turn-key TV search appliance (a piece of hardware) from us. It’s delivered pre-configured, making it easy to setup and install. This SnapStream TV search appliance can record up to 10 channels at a time and then our software, running on this appliance, indexes those recordings and makes them searchable.

Here’s a video demo’ing our TV search interface:

So there are the basics. Have any other questions? Post them in the comments and I’ll answer them!