Capabilities

An unmatched media research facility driving the next generation of captivating, compelling content.

The Medialab provides the total consumer experience—content anywhere and any way audiences want it—allowing for unprecedented study of consumer behavior and engagement across the full spectrum of media types, platforms, devices, and scenarios. From large-group direct response, to subtle eye movements, or a change in heart rate signaling an emotional connection, the Lab’s numerous qualitative and quantitative measures of engagement generate fresh insights into how consumers access, process, and respond to information.

A window into at-home media engagement

The In-Home Simulation offers unparalleled insight into how consumers interact and engage with content amid the devices and distractions of a typical home setting. In the non-laboratory, natural home environment, participants choose programming and how to access it, when and how to use available devices, and what else to do while viewing content—providing researchers and observers with a thorough understanding of how a message or program can stand out from the crowd.

  • Do viewers look up the Facebook page of a network or an advertiser when prompted during a commercial break?
  • How do content creators provide a more captivating video on demand (VOD) experience?
  • Gain more insight into the gaming experience by testing consumers’ knowledge of accessing online game content via an array of gaming consoles (e.g., Xbox, PlayStation, Wii).
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Technology

  • 55" HD/3D/Internet-capable television with surround sound
  • Gaming consoles (e.g., Wii, PlayStation, Xbox)
  • Streaming media players (e.g., Roku, Apple TV)
  • Disk players (e.g., Blu-ray)
  • Tablets (e.g., iPad, Amazon Fire)
  • Smart refrigerator
  • 2 ceiling-mounted cameras and microphones

Consumer response through the lens of the cinema

The Theater enables observers and researchers to understand group dynamics as participants respond to HD/3D television and theatrical content, such as series pilots, theatrical trailers, and advertising content. The audience response systemAudience Response System

Audience response systems allow large groups of people to respond to presented information, answer questions, or submit votes. Each participant has a wireless device on which he/she can make selections or convey a response, and the audience response system tabulates group results. Data is compiled in near–real time and available to testers or presenters for immediate feedback
—direct feedback via dial pads—generates a real-time aggregated metric of group engagement, which can be used not only to improve the on-screen content, but also to direct discussions or studies with smaller participant groups.

  • How does the group react to different types of product placement and contextual advertising in a television show?
  • How does the combination of theater display and dial-based direct response determine when people find on-screen programming funny or interesting?
  • How does a large respondent group react to live viewing of sporting events or news?
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Technology

  • Seating for up to 47 audience members
  • Removable rows of seats enable use of Theater as event space
  • High-definition/3D projection onto 180" screen
  • Dolby THX sound system
  • 2 audience-focused cameras with visible/infrared imaging capability
  • 2 presentation-focused cameras
  • Dial-based wireless audience response system

From media to retail, what works in the checkout lane

The Retail Checkout area is the proving ground for understanding how and when content exposure equals sales. With a wide array of simulated retail checkout environments, researchers can monitor and record consumer point-of-purchase behavior, engagement, and decisions, providing insight into how consumers engage with on-screen or on-shelf retail content.

  • What types of products, packaging, and signage are most engaging? What do people pick up to purchase?
  • What checkout areas get the most attention and emotional response?
  • How does behavior change with the number of people in line? How do people use smart phones at checkout, and what role can they play in the process?
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Technology

  • 3 checkout lanes, including one self-checkout
  • Newsstands, magazines, DVD racks
  • 4 ceiling-mounted cameras and microphones
  • Multiple simulated retail environment options

Discovering what consumers think and feel

The Usability Lab and the Conversation Room provide two areas that allow small groups and individuals to engage with content, react to it, and advise observers and researchers of their opinions. Participants interact with various forms of content on individual screens, personal devices, wall-mounted televisions, or hard copy prints, and then discuss their reactions, opinions, and preferences with a moderator. Observers watch and record activity via monitors that replicate participant screen content and live camera feeds focused on group and individual responses.

  • Assess the navigability and features of new websites, video games, or tablet apps?
  • Can they find the content they want to find?
  • What do they retain from various website layouts or designs?
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Configuration options

  • 8 stations with computer, gaming console, or guest device (Usability Lab)
  • 8 connections for notebook computers, tablets, or guest devices (Conversation Room)
  • 12 seats around meeting table (Usability Lab/Conversation Room)

Usability Lab technology

  • 8 24" monitors for computer, gaming console, other device input
  • 55" HD/3D/Internet-capable television
  • 2 46" monitors
  • 8 ceiling-mounted cameras for participants
  • 1 wide-angle ceiling-mounted camera
  • Multiple ceiling-mounted microphones

Conversation Room technology

  • 2 46" HD/3D/Internet-capable televisions
  • 4 ceiling-mounted cameras
  • Which version of an ad or page layout is most effective to maximize time consumers spend looking at the product being advertised?
  • Are pop-up ads effective?
  • What do game players pay attention to on their gaming screens?
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A customizable view of consumer activity and response

Dedicated observation rooms attached to the Usability Lab and Conversation Room allow for small groups of observers to monitor and even influence studies in real time.

On-screen content or camera feeds from every room in the Media Lab can be recorded or replicated anywhere else, including to multiple monitors in dedicated observation rooms, to other rooms in the Medialab—such as the Theater for large groups of observers—or even to remote view observers, and send inquiries remotely through a temporary, encrypted virtual private network. In addition, all content can be recorded immediately to any preferred media device.

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Usability Lab observation technology

  • One-way mirror to testing room
  • 15 observer seats
  • 2 46" monitors for multiple camera/screen views
  • 8 smaller monitors

Conversation Room observation technology

  • One-way mirror to testing room
  • 10 observer seats
  • 2 46" monitors for multiple camera/screen views