ALVISO, Calif: Funny how hate objects can become love objects. In less than a year digital video device TiVo has been transformed by an act of auto da fé from advertising apostate to media messiah.

Having recently struck a deal with Interpublic Group's Emerging Media Lab to supply audience behavioral data, TiVo this week recruited Omnicom Media Group to its second-by-second audience measurement service, plus a separate study of viewer 'engagement' based on DVR responsive data.

OMG, which oversees the OMD and PHD global media networks, says the networks' clientele will also benefit from economies of scale on data pricing.

TiVo's deals with IPG and OMG are each valued at upward of a million dollars, although exact numbers remain beneath the wraps. In addition to cash considerations, the contracts add credence to TiVo's attempt to reposition itself from just another hardware brand into a diversified software and data provider.

But the company - still immersed in red ink nine years on from its launch - has an uphill struggle to convince analysts it can prosper amid competition from other DVR technology providers, including cable and satellite operators offering their own DVRs and digital set-top boxes.

TiVo's second-by-second audience research, compiled from data supplied automatically by 4.4 million (mostly) early adopting homes, is much more detailed than that supplied by Nielsen Media Research, which reports on a minute-by-minute basis.

The Interpublic and Omnicom media shops will employ TiVo data to supplement Nielsen metrics, gathering more detailed information as to how people use DVRs and interact with advertising.

TiVo has also been increasing its use of tightly targeted opt-in ads, the responses to which agencies and advertisers are eager to study for new insights into consumer ad consumption.

  • Separately, TiVo this week posted an increased Q2 loss of $6.5 million (€5.07m; £3.41m), dragged down by legal costs related to its patent dispute with EchoStar Communications. This compares with a loss of $892,000 in the same period a year ago.

    Revenue rose 50% to $59.2m, with service and technology revenue climbing to $52.9m from $40.7m. The company also added 30,000 net new subscribers ending the quarter to July 31 with more than 4.4m customers.

    Data sourced from AdAge (USA) and Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff