In a move to provide some relief to the pay TV industry’s expensive password-sharing headache, Buffalo, New York-based technology group Synacor has officially unveiled Forever Login. The new feature on the company’s Cloud ID authentication platform lets operators balance easy subscriber access to TV Everywhere content with control over the number of concurrent devices allowed and length of time required between logins, the company said.
Forever Login automatically registers a user’s device the first time they log into a TV Everywhere app and continues to authorize video on the device—in compliance with operator policies. All other existing authentication solutions require consumers to reenter passwords after a set period of time, Synacor said, but Forever Login simply prompts them to “continue” to access the app or site they’re using to watch pay TV.
“Operators want to give subscribers the anytime, anywhere TV Everywhere access they crave but there are complex rights and meaningful business issues that have stood in the way,” Synacor CEO Himesh Bhise said in a statement. “Forever Login lets TV Everywhere subscribers say goodbye to passwords, while giving operators the tools they need to tackle what analysts are calling a $10 billion password abuse problem facing the pay TV industry,” he said.
That figure comes from a study by industry consultancy Parks Associates.
It’s become a big issue. Charter Communications and ESPN have been particularly vocal about the need to limit password sharing of multiscreen services.
When paired with Synacor’s mobile Single Sign-On technology that keeps users logged in across multiple apps, Forever Login clears the way for increased TV Everywhere usage in and out of home, the company said.
Scott Young, director of marketing at cable operator Service Electric Cablevision called Forever Login “the first tool that enables us to easily enforce fraud prevention rules while improving the consumer experience.“
Synacor said its systems help operators address password abuse by setting an operator-determined maximum number of concurrent streams and failed login attempts; reduce trouble calls by eliminating the need to re-enter passwords; offer easy access by letting subscribers login from anywhere; and empowers subscribers by allowing them to monitor all devices and log out remotely if a device is lost or password stolen.