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SnapStream Blog

New SnapStream Express: Record & Search TV for $499

April 30 2015 by Rachel Abbott

snapstreamExpress

Meet the New SnapStream Express. At $499, it's the smallest SnapStream appliance ever. You get all the power of SnapStream's TV recording, search and Twitter and Facebook integration, in a compact, affordable package.

SnapStream Express paves the way for more users to get their hands on SnapStream. Everyone can record and search TV like "The Daily Show" and "Last Week Tonight." Be it a single TV show with a social media initiative, a TV-focused journalist, or any organization using DVRs or TiVos.

New! SnapStream Express ($499)

SnapStream Express is now available with free U.S. shipping. Get yours at snapstream.com/express:

• Record 2 TV channels in SD or HD

• Up to 2,076 hours (SD) or 346 hours (HD) with 2TB

• SnapStream's TV search & social TV features*

• Share unlimited clips in the cloud

• Regular software & program guide updates

• Full-service technical support & user training

We got an awesome write-up about the SnapStream Express launch on Ars Technica. And oh, here's a #BananaForScale, to show the svelte form factor of SnapStream Express.

 

Which SnapStream is Right For You?

Considering the SnapStream Small Business Edition (SBE) starts at $10,000, SnapStream Express delivers a new entry-level option that's easy to budget for, manage and deploy.

  SnapStream Express SnapStream SBE or SD/HD
Size Desktop PC Size (10.9" x 8.7" x 6.9") 3U Rackmount (25.5" x 17.2" x 5.2")
Weight Lightweight (10 lbs) Heavy-duty (75 - 120 lbs)
IT Footprint Quietly sits on your desk like a PC IT admin stores in your server room
Storage 2 TB stores up to 2,076 hrs (max) SBE: 3 TB stores up to 3,400 hrs (max)
SD/HD: expandable storage/archive
Channels 2 SD/HD channels max SBE: Max. 6 channels SD/HD
SD/HD: 4-10+ channels expandable
Users 5 users max SBE: 5 users max; SD/HD: unlimited
Price $499 Starts at $10,000

We're happy to consult on the best SnapStream option for you. Drop us a line at [email protected] or 1-877-762-7787.

*SnapStream Express has the same feature set as the Small Business Edition. This includes capabilities like TV recording, search, unlimited clips, cloud sharing, file export, social media integration and more. This excludes SmartChapters and Clustering, and limits ShowSqueeze to clips only. Maximum of 5 user licenses.

New SnapStream 6.4: Share TV Moments on Twitter and Facebook

November 04 2014 by Jennifer Miller

Boost Social TV Ratings with SnapStream

Social media + TV go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Don’t believe us? Check out this Twitter Media Blog detailing stats from the recent social media storm caused by the Syfy Network’s “Sharknado 2: The Second One.”

The newly released SnapStream 6.4 makes it easy to engage with your fans/viewers through social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook. It's so quick to post images, TV clips and animated GIFs, because you can "do it yourself," without help from video production or anyone else.

Tweets and TV, Side by Side

Inside SnapStream, for the first time, you can watch the broadcast of any TV show AND what viewers are live-tweeting about it, side by side, in one window through our "Tweets Tab."

Live-tweet your TV show

Tweets are automatically categorized so our "Tweets Tab" automatically works for 200+ US channels. Just pull up a national TV show and you'll see tweets about that show, from the Twitter firehose, displayed side by side with the show itself.

And to make it easy to find the right TV moment, you can click on any tweet to "snap" to that moment in the broadcast. From there you can reply to an individual tweet with a TV screenshot, animated GIF or video clip.

With our "Tweets Tab," you can engage people watching your TV show with unprecedented efficiency -- there isn't a better way to "engage your follower's followers."

And live-tweeting does wonders to boost follower growth and to build a strong social audience for your TV show, according to a recent Twitter study.

Share TV Clips, Screenshots and Animated GIFs to Your Social Media Audience

Here's how SnapStream can help your TV show maximize engagement on Twitter and Facebook for every minute of your broadcast, to boost viewership and Nielsen Social TV Ratings.

Tweet and Reply on Twitter

Did you know that simply adding an image to your tweet can double your engagement rate? SnapStream 6.4 gives you a quick, seamless tool for replying to tweets with embedded TV clips, images or animated GIFs.

Reply to tweets with TV clips, screenshots and animated GIFs

This allows you to engage your viewers and fans in a one-to-one fashion, in real time, with the actual TV moments they're talking about. Tweet, rinse and repeat to amplify 100s of engagements into 1000s.

The clips you create for Twitter are stored in SnapStream’s cloud forever (no limits on storage!) and the images and animated GIFs are stored directly on Twitter.

Add a caption to any TV screenshot

Create viral buzz with memes! SnapStream 6.4 allows you to overlay text onto any TV screenshot, so you can add a meme-like photo caption or a message to drive more followers.

We support multiple Twitter accounts per user and users can easily and securely add their own accounts without the need for an administrator to be involved.

 Post Directly to Facebook

Ensure viewers will come back for more by capitalizing on your content’s ability to keep viewers hooked between episodes. SnapStream 6.4 allows you to compose Facebook posts directly inside of SnapStream that contain screenshot images or even TV clips directly from the show.

Post to Facebook

With all the content you'll be posting, you might be curious where those videos and images will be stored. All media content is natively embedded and hosted on Facebook.

With SnapStream 6.4, you can publish content directly to your Facebook Page. Are you managing multiple Facebook pages? SnapStream supports multiple Facebook accounts, so you can securely manage all of your Facebook Pages from a single SnapStream log-in.

Create and Share Animated GIFs

GIFs are at the heart of many Internet memes and viral phenomenon. SnapStream makes it easy to create and share animated GIFs on the Web and to social sites like Twitter and Tumblr. It’s one of SnapStream’s essential tools for repurposing your show’s content and engaging fans online.

SnapStream 6.4 makes it easy to adjust frame rate and speed so you can highlight those awesome sports moments (or bloopers) with slow motion. In this case, we had fun speeding up this SNL clip with Kristen Wiig, Lady Gaga and Justin Timberlake!

Create animated GIFs out of TV clips

 

Ready to see SnapStream 6.4 in action?

Webinar: Boost Social TV Ratings with SnapStream

Date/Time: Tuesday, November 18 at 3 p.m. EST / Noon PST

For: TV Shows and Broadcasters

Webinar: Share TV to Twitter and Facebook

Date: Wednesday, November 19

Pick a Time: Noon EST / 9 a.m. PST or 3 p.m. EST /noon PST

For: All Organizations

How can I upgrade to 6.4?

For current customers: To schedule your free upgrade* to 6.4, contact SnapStream’s support team via the Enterprise Support Form or via email at [email protected]

For new users: Contact one of our Sales Engineers to start the conversation about your TV monitoring needs. Email: [email protected]am.com. Phone: 1-877-762-7787

*All software upgrades are free for current SnapStream customers who have a valid support contract and meet the hardware pre-requisites.

Watch SnapStream's CEO, Rakesh Agrawal, on Bloomberg TV

June 26 2014 by Jennifer Miller

Are you curious about the present and future plans of SnapStream? Who better to ask than the CEO and Founder himself!

On Thursday, June 26th, at 9:45am CT, Stephanie Ruhle from Bloomberg TV's "Market Makers" interviewed SnapStream's CEO, Rakesh Agrawal. During this interview Rakesh explains how SnapStream technology is able to search anything said on TV - helping out the likes of corporate firms, federal and government agencies and, of course, television shows such as "The Daily Show" and "Last Week Tonight."

Rakesh also announces the future plans of SnapStream. (Hint: Anyone into social media? We thought so!)

Tune in! (Run Time: 7 minutes)

Breaking New Ground in SnapStream's TV Monitoring and Search Technology with Dr. Michael Speriosu, PhD in Linguistics

December 02 2013 by MSperiosu

Dr. Michael Speriosu, PhD in Linguistics and Engineer at SnapStream

Hi, everyone! My name is Mike Speriosu and I was the main developer of a set of TV search improvements in SnapStream 6.1 that involve language. I recently finished my doctorate at the University of Texas at Austin where I worked on problems at the intersection of human language and computer science, and was lucky enough to join the SnapStream development team a few months ago.

Products like SnapStream are part of an ongoing trend in technology to help people interact with each other and with computers using their most advanced and expressive mode of communication: language. After working on a variety of linguistic and software problems in academia, I was very eager to apply my skills to a real-life product that could benefit from more linguistic intelligence.

TV media monitoring: find anything said on TV with SnapStream

One of the most compelling features of SnapStream's TV media monitoring technology has always been its ability to search recordings and send alerts based on what’s said on TV, and now recording and searching closed caption data work better than ever.


Closed Captioning Correction

Capitalization

A lot of the closed caption (CC) text that initially comes through with the video and audio signal is messy in various ways. Many CCs are in all caps or just capitalized oddly, so at least some degree of re-capitalization is necessary before we show and save the text, in order to be easily readable.

Previously, we essentially lowercased everything except the first letter of every sentence. We now use a combination of algorithms and dictionaries to be smarter about what should be capitalized. Names of people, places, companies, and more are now often properly capitalized.

TV Monitoring, Recording and Search Technology

Click image to expand.

Misspellings

Another problem with CC text is that it sometimes contains misspellings. We now use a dictionary and statistical model to detect when we think a word is misspelled, and automatically correct the spelling when we have high confidence that our fix is correct. We took special care not to make this feature too aggressive, because we know how annoying automatic corrections can be when they’re wrong. Making a valid correction, however, could be the difference between getting a relevant alert and not getting it.

Television Monitoring Software: Custom Dictionary

To give SnapStream customers more control over these CC-altering features, we've included a custom dictionary where administrators can specify their own words and phrases that they want capitalized a certain way. We’ll never attempt to change the spelling of words in this custom dictionary.

We’re trying out these advanced CC-altering features on English text only, with plans to expand to other languages in the future. In the meantime, we have an algorithm that ensures incoming CCs are English before applying the features, so that your favorite Spanish or French shows don’t have their spelling corrected as if they’re English.

Did You Mean? Search Suggestions

When you searched in previous versions of SnapStream, you would sometimes get suggestions in the form of Did you mean ____? but the quality of these suggestions left a lot to be desired. Our suggestion engine now takes into account the statistical properties of your entire library of recordings, resulting in much more useful suggestions. We also now have the ability to give suggestions when searching the program guide, something that was absent from past releases.

Advanced TV search engine

Click image to expand.

Suffixes

Another improvement we’ve made to search makes it so that suffixes like -s, -ing, -ed, and so on do not affect whether a word counts as a match for your search term. For example, searching for campaign will now match recordings that mentioned campaign, campaigns, campaigned, and campaigning, giving you more relevant results with less effort.

Linguistic Intelligence - SnapStream TV Media Monitoring and Search

Click image to expand.

Synonyms

We’ve also added some lists of synonyms to our search engine, so that searching for big will also match large, and similarly for many other words. We made an effort only to make such connections between words that really do mean the same thing the vast majority of the time.

TV Search results include synonyms

Click image to expand.

Pronoun Matching

SnapStream returns results for pronouns like he, she, and I that likely refer to the same person named in a search, e.g. Lebron, in addition to exact matches on the name itself.

Pronouns are allowed to match names for up to about one minute after the name is mentioned. We hope this feature makes it even easier to find relevant information in your recordings without spending a long time refining your search query.

Advanced TV Monitoring Software: Pronoun Matching

Click image to expand.

Accent Ignoring

Finally, we've made it so SnapStream recognizes accents and other special characters and treats them alike, so you don't have to worry about exact spelling in your searches to return all possible matches. If you search for entree, you'll get hits for both entree and entrée. And if you search for entrée, you'll get hits for both entrée and entree.

Accent ignoring yields higher quality TV Search results

Click image to expand.

The End

We added these features with the intent of making recording and searching just work better, even if you don’t always notice the new feature that kicked in and just made your life easier. We appreciate software that simply works, and hope we’ve achieved that goal with this update!

About Mike Speriosu

Mike Speriosu received Bachelor's degrees in Computer Science and Linguistics from Stanford University and a Master's and PhD in Linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin. He has published work in computational linguistics and done consulting in software development for companies looking to beef up the linguistic intelligence of their products. He is now on the development team at SnapStream.

 

 

New! SnapStream 5.7 expands TV monitoring capabilities

November 30 2012 by Rachel Abbott

By human nature, we all love new things: The rush of adopting the latest technology. The smell of a new car. The opening night at the movies.

The excitement of a new release of SnapStream.

Today we're rolling out 5.7, which expands the scope of recording, searching and managing TV from your Web browser. Schedule your upgrade with our support team to gain access to these useful, new features:

1. Display search results by TV show

A new user-level setting allows you to auto-collapse search results by TV show, creating a macro view of all mentions. In this example, the results are collapsed by TV show, displaying an overview of where the search term Obama appears. Click the arrows to expand the results.

TV search results collapsed

Alternatively, you can opt to display the results in the expanded view, so it's easier to see every individual mention within every show. In this example, SnapStream drills into the first result, News Nation, to identify every mention of the search term Obama in that program.

TV search results expanded

2. Create a saved search filter

At the user level, save a default search filter to refine the displayed TV search results. For example, you could exclude clips or ShowSqueezed files from showing up in your searches. Combine any of SnapStream's search filters, such as DATE, CATEGORY, CHANNEL, TITLE, FILE TYPE, etc. See the help file for a complete list.

 

3. ShowSqueeze to a new format, QuickTime

In addition to the H.264 and WMV codecs, ShowSqueeze supports the QuickTime format (.mov). We recommend transcoding to reduce file sizes, which thereby increases archive depth.

4. Implement new Workflows

Since Workflows were first released in SnapStream 5.4, we have continued to add new, versatile options. In 5.7, we implemented the following:

New Triggers

ShowSqueeze Finished - Initiate a Workflow once a transcode completes.

Only When Run Manually - Create Workflows to run on demand, from the TV Library, as a series of saved actions.

New Filter

Clips - Create Workflows that only apply to files that are clips.

New Actions

Export Item - Export a copy of a TV file outside of SnapStream's environment, with the option to include or exclude closed captioning. For instance, export clips to a third-party transcoding application.

Transcode to QuickTime - As explained above in #3.

5. Schedule time-based guide recordings

In 5.7, we introduce a new alternative for recording multiple segments of a channel, throughout the day. Once you select the time period and the channel desired, SnapStream will display all of the upcoming programs to be recorded during that time, in relation to the latest program guide data.

Here's a time-based guide recording on CNN from 12 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Create time-based guide recordings

6. Receive emails out of the box

In 5.7, SnapStream.net takes over all email service responsibilities, to remove the administrative step of setting up SMTP. Important features like TV Alerts and system notifications work without any pre-configuration.

SnapStream.net email service

7. Play out SDI with new, improved controls

Manage SDI playout with controls to pause, seek and stop. Edit the playlist to remove or reorder recordings.

 

Ready to get started?

Contact [email protected] or 1-877-762-7787.

Ready to upgrade to 5.7?

Contact [email protected]tream.com or 1-877-696-3674.

 

New release! SnapStream 5.6 has arrived.

October 12 2012 by Rachel Abbott

In the newest release of SnapStream, we added new features and made core improvements to deliver the strongest and most reliable TV search experience, yet.

+ We added muscle to our Mac version.

The Web Player for Mac supports viewing of in-progress TV recordings, which is a game-changer for TV monitoring on OS X.

+ We added more options for Workflows.

You can delay tasks, like ShowSqueeze, to occur a certain number of days later. This is what we call a new trigger in Workflows.

+ We remodeled the TV Library.

You can sort recordings by date and channel to locate and play the content you want much faster.

+ We improved how you set Recording Priorities.

You can drag and drop your job priorities on the fly, to make quick changes.

+ We made things more speedy, in general.

Enjoy faster page loads and fewer clicks to get to your common tasks.

+ We make it easy to upgrade.

Contact SnapStream's expert support team to schedule your upgrade to 5.6. See what else is new in version 5.

[email protected]
+1 (877) 696-3674

+ We love new users.

Contact our Sales Engineers to get started with SnapStream today.

[email protected]
+1 (877) 762-7787

New Release! SnapStream 5.5.1

June 21 2012 by Rachel Abbott

TV Search on Target for Speed, Play Back H.264 on Your Mac

Today marks a new season, the first day of summer, and also the release of a new version of SnapStream. Yippee! In case you forgot, software upgrades are always free for current customers, so get in touch with our support team and we'll hook you up.

Here's a look at what's new in SnapStream 5.5.1:

- Search TV up to 4X faster in the Web interface—from when you initially conduct a search to the individual page loads of your search results.
- Transcode to H.264 in half the time.
- Play back H.264 from the Mac Web Player.
- Record any digital channel 24/7 with seamless transitions between recording blocks.
- Use the new clip status box to track and play your clip faster.
- IR blast sub-channels when using ATSC/QAM converter boxes.

Curious about other improvements and bug fixes? Check the 5.5.1 release notes.
Also, if you're currently on version 4, you'll want to explore the gamut of new features available in version 5.

Play TV in brilliant HD, from your Mac

January 30 2012 by Rachel Abbott

SnapStream's newly released Mac Web Player opens up the world of TV search to Mac users for the very first time. As we hoped it would, the announcement of Mac support generated tons of excitement and fanfare on Engadget, GigaOm and a bunch of other places.

Today, it gets even better. We are releasing 5.4.2, which carries support for HD video playback on Mac OS X. Woohoo!

So now you can enjoy the crisp resolution of high-definition television as you search, play and clip content from your Mac, connected to your SnapStream HD. Version 5.4.2 also features increased stability for the Mac Web Player and the ability to load guide data from offline sources, if you're so inclined.

While HDTV monitoring is a nice luxury for some, for others it is absolutely necessary. For instance, when repurposing TV content, it's HD for the win. For SnapStream users who work heavily in Final Cut Pro, in Mac environments, this one's for you. Seamless Mac HD support is bringing you a big workflow boost!

Hey Windows users, we haven't forgotten about you! In addition to the new features we highlighted here, every SnapStream release rolls out fixes and improvements meant to refine your user experience. So, it's usually a good idea to update to the latest version of SnapStream. Check out our release notes for the specifics.

SnapStream users, contact our support team to see about scheduling your free upgrade to version 5.4.2.

Not searching TV, yet? Give our sales engineers a holler to get started today.

Finally, SnapStream supports Mac OS X!

January 17 2012 by Rachel Abbott

Apple fans, today is your day. After over a decade of developing software for Windows, SnapStream is thrilled to announce the all-new Web Player for Mac OS X. This is the big cherry on top of Fifth Generation SnapStream, which has brought you scalability with clustering, Workflows, and tons of other new features and upgrades.

With the new release of 5.4.1, Mac users can now experience TV search in their native environments, for the very first time.

SnapStream's Mac Web Player is essentially a custom plug-in that we created to fit within the primary Web interface. It plays back SnapStream's native MPEG-2 TV recordings in Mozilla Firefox 8 and above, and runs on Mac OS X 10.6.3 and above (which corresponds to anything after Snow Leopard).

The look, feel and functionality is exactly the same as the Web Player for PC, which was released in June 2011. From the Web browser, users can point to the SnapStream appliance installed on their LAN and then continue to:

Schedule TV recordings from the electronic program guide

Search a vast archive of TV in milliseconds

• Create TV clips

• Play back TV recordings, clips or search results

Transcode TV content and

• Set up TV Alerts

For those who work exclusively in Mac environments (i.e. educators and broadcasters), SnapStream is very excited to welcome your business and to dazzle you with the powerful capabilities of TV Search. Solving TV monitoring problems is what we love to do. Contact us to get started or to schedule your upgrade to version 5. (Current customers must meet the hardware prerequisities in order to upgrade.)

New release! SnapStream 5.4

December 08 2011 by Rachel Abbott
What's new in SnapStream 5.4
Freshly baked by our little software elves, SnapStream 5.4 is ready right in time for the holidays. As always, the upgrade is completely free of charge to current enterprise customers. How's that for a stocking stuffer? Fifth generation SnapStream is chock-full of delightful goodies meant to enhance your TV search experience. First came clustering technology, then the Web Player plug-in and now you get

Upgrade to 5.4
  Advanced ShowSqueeze Rules New!
Advanced ShowSqueeze Rules
  • Set up custom rules for post-processing tasks at the job level
  • Use the easy drag-and-drop rule builder
  • Replace your global ShowSqueeze settings
  • Specify destination folders for specific types of completed tasks
  • Reduce file sizes to triple available storage
  • Optimize video formats for e-mail, iPads, iPhones, and more!
  Explore ShowSqueeze
Exclude Time From 24/7 Blocks New!
  • Exclude chunks of time from 24/7 recording blocks
  • Prevent recording of unwanted content
  • Save storage space by reducing clutter
  • For example, you may want to exclude infomercials that typically air from midnight to 5 a.m.
Exclude time from 24/7 recordings
Explore TV Recording
  Faster Guide Updates New!
Faster guide updates
  • Program guide updates occur up to 80% faster thanks to heavy optimization
  • Daily updates occur more frequently and consistently
  • New custom lineup wizard helps produce your own program guide
  • Smart updater removes duplicate shows from multiple TV sources
Folder Security and Permissions  
  • Now restored in the Web interface
  • Grant specific user groups permissions to view/access particular video folders in the library
  • Restrict activities like watching recordings, watching live TV, scheduling recordings and changing settings
  • New user permission category for Create Clips
folder security
SnapStream Version 5 Overview
  • Clustering capabilities allow you to scale up
  • New Web player plug-in delivers TV search in any Web browser
  • Service architecture designed from the ground up to be more robust
  • Nimble Web interface runs on Microsoft IIS Express
  • Enhanced fault tolerance and intelligent error handling
  4.9.3 and below Upgrade to 5.4
on existing hardware
New SnapStream
appliance with 5.4
OS Windows XP Windows XP Windows Server 2008
Web Server SnapStream-built IIS Express IIS
Date Store XML and INI files SQL Server Express SQL Server Express
  Good Better Best!
Why upgrade to 5?
Sounds great! How do we get started?
There are a few criteria to meet before we can begin your upgrade. Contact SnapStream's Support Team to discuss your eligibility and options. E-mail [email protected] or call 1-877-696-3674 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday.

Keep on searching,

The SnapStream Team

 

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