Marcus Bergström: VionLabs is Maximizing Entertainment and Minimizing Frustration for end-users


Maximizing Entertainment and minimizing frustration for consumers of streaming services by providing high-quality data for recommendations, binge watching, content acquisition and much more through deep emotional understanding of content

Q: Tell us about yourself?

A combination of passion for deep tech/AI and being a movie geek, understanding how content impacts the user emotionally has always been on the top of my mind. And to use AI to do this analysis as scale is the future felt like a no brainer to solve problems of recommendations and other data driven decisions in the media industry

Q: What is the inspiration behind your business?

Simply speaking, we are solving two groups of problems:

  1. Minimize frustration: We want to make it as easy and delighting as possible for you as an end-consumer to find what to watch in a streaming service and not having to spend 10s of minutes to find something to watch. That includes presenting you with the right content at the right time, it includes creating compelling art work so that you can make an educated decision on how you are about to invest your time (trailers, posters etc) and it also includes innovating around new use-cases like personal and mood channels.
  2. Maximize Entertainment: When you are watching content, we want the experience to be as enjoyable as possible. A good example of this are our “binge markers”, automatically detecting intros, recaps and end-credits so that your experience when binging through your favorite series becomes as frictionless as possible

Q: What is your magic sauce?

We have developed in-house deep neural networks that are trained to only take the video file as input, and then output highly detailed information around the emotional structure of content, how it relates to other pieces of content as well as where the areas of friction are in the content (ad breaks, intros etc). Vionlabs is the only company in the world who are able to summarize an full length movie or series into a single high-dimensional fingerprint.

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Q: Where do you see your company going in 5 years?

Vionlabs will be the heart and data backbone of the streaming media industry, serving as a high-quality API with answers to any question you will have regarding how to maximize entertainment and minimize frustration for your end-users.

Examples of questions are: “what is my user in the mood for this friday night” to “what content should I buy for my platform” to “where should I place the ad break for minimal disruption to the viewing experience” to “I have produced this new movie, how does it compare to what is already out there so that I know how to market it?”

Q: What has been your biggest setback so far?

As a startup you are facing major setbacks every day, so it’s hard to pick one. But in the development of our neural networks, a process that has taken us years to get right, we have faced countless gutting setbacks where results did not come out as expected, networks didn’t perform in the “wild” in customer trials etc. In the startup world you will have “google days” and “going broke days”, you just need to stay true to the mission and vision

Q: What is the next big challenge for your business?

Scale and adoption of AI commercially. AI is still by many seen as a buzz word and a new unproven technology, so to educated and bring the industry from “proof of concept mode” to “this is an integral part of our daily business” is the biggest challenge for the coming year or two

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Q: How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

We want anyone who is serious about Maximizing Entertainment and Minimizing Frustration for their end-users to reach out to Vionlabs. We are passionate and borderline obsessive about solving these challenges for the end-consumers, but we can’t do it alone, we need to partner with the many great streaming services and studios out there!

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