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A newly established project group aims to make it easier for broadcasters to provide more personalized user experiences. While the growth of internet-connected TV and radio receivers has opened up many new possibilities for innovative online and hybrid services, authentication remains a blocking point.
A solution to this problem would unlock the potential for a minor revolution in the usually anonymous world of broadcasting. Established by the EBU's strategic programme on TV Platforms & Services, the Cross-Platform Authentication (CPA) project group will develop an alternative to proprietary single sign-on systems that already exist. The group will develop a variant of the widely implemented open standard OAuth 2.0 protocol specifically targeted at IP-connected media devices. The proposal may ultimately be submitted for adoption in OAuth 2.0.
The CPA group is chaired by the BBC's Sean O’Halpin (pictured below), who is the lead engineer in the BBC R&D Internet Research and Future Services section. The new group's objectives are to simplify the user experience for accessing multiple services across different platforms and devices, while protecting users' information and ensuring data isolation between broadcasters. The protocol will need to take into account the range of device capabilities in terms of displays and input methods.