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High-Quality Video Takes a News Brand’s Apps to the Top

The Challenge

The news division of a multinational media and entertainment company maintained an enviable market position: Its brands included some of the industry’s most trusted and recognized outlets. But as the news division moved into the streaming sector, its mobile app experience fell short. While the news division’s on-demand initiatives had rapidly grown—expanding to 11 brands, including iOS, Android and over-the-top (OTT) platforms—app store ratings were low and growth stalled. The apps lacked the reliable, high-quality video needed to attract the advertisers and subscribers that would enable the division to succeed with streaming models, such as OTT and direct-to-consumer (DTC). The division partnered with Cognizant to reengineer solutions for quality video.

Our Approach

Cognizant originally partnered with the division to support platform development and QA for streaming services. However, as the division’s platform expansion encountered the video setbacks, we transitioned to product engineering, bringing a unique mix of video engineering expertise and Agile development methodologies. We upgraded video playback using a combination of cloud- and HTML5-based development technologies. Agile development sped up feature upgrades, with enhancements ready for release every two days, down from two weeks. Our team customized and implemented an automated QA solution to identify the root causes of playback issues. We also addressed tactical needs, such as crowd testing the apps prior to launch, enabling the division to assess features and incorporate user feedback.

Improved Video Quality Boosts Ratings

The boost in video quality helped the news division’s streaming efforts gain traction. The division’s parent company then decided to scale the solutions and video player platforms we created, launching streaming platforms for its lifestyle and entertainment brands. This increased the company’s overall subscriber base and generated higher revenues from ad monetization. Before, the news division struggled with the low mean opinion score KPIs. The new solution detects and addresses such problems before viewers encounter them, eliminating the low scores. Our teams continue to partner on advancing the news outlets’ user experiences. We’re now working to create personalized landing pages that reflect viewers’ individual interests and preferences. 



increase in net promoter score, from 44 to 47

From 2.0 to 4.7

jump in app ratings for Android

From 2.5 to 4.3

jump in app ratings for iOS