DCR Thailand Video iOS SDK

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Overview

The Nielsen SDK is one of multiple framework SDKs that Nielsen provides to enable measuring live streaming and on-demand video content viewing using TVs, mobile devices, etc.

Prerequisites

To start using the App SDK, the following details are required:

  • App ID (appid): Unique ID assigned to the player/site and configured by product.
  • sfcode: Unique identifier for the environment that the SDK should point to.
  • Nielsen SDK: The Nielsen SDK package contains a variety of sample players for your reference.

If you do not have any of these prerequisites or if you have any questions, please contact our SDK sales support team. Refer to Digital Measurement Onboarding guide for information on how to get a Nielsen App SDK and appid.

Implementation

This guide covers implementation steps for iOS using Xcode.

Setting up your Development Environment

Configuring Xcode Development Environment

Nielsen App SDK is compatible with Apple iOS versions 9.0 and above.

The SDK uses the NSURLSession instead of the deprecated NSURLConnection.

Note: All communications between the SDK and the Census (Collection Facility) use HTTPS.

Importing Frameworks The first step is to ensure that the following frameworks and libraries are imported into the Frameworks folder of the Xcode project before creating an instance of the Nielsen App SDK object.

  • UIKit.framework
  • Foundation.framework
  • AdSupport.framework
  • SystemConfiguration.framework
  • Security.framework
    • Nielsen Analytics framework makes use of a number of functions in this library.
  • AVFoundation.framework
    • This framework is mandatory for the iOS SDK version 5.1.1 to work.
  • CoreLocation.framework
  • CoreMedia.framework
  • NielsenAppApi.framework
  • libc++.tbd (as SDK contains Objective C++ source file)
    • Alternatively, include -lstdc++ in Build Settings → Other Linker Flag of the Xcode project
Example
  • Extract “NielsenAppApi.Framework” from the Nielsen App SDK sample app and copy it to Frameworks folder of the Xcode project.
  • Add the code -#import NielsenAppApi/NielsenAppApi.h to the View Controller’s header file.

Ensure that the following are included in the Linked Frameworks and Libraries list (located in the project’s Summary settings).

  • Nielsen App SDK
  • iOS security framework


Using Swift To import a set of Objective-C files in the same app target as your Swift code, you rely on an Objective-C bridging header to expose those files to Swift. Xcode offers to create this header file when you add a Swift file to an existing Objective-C app, or an Objective-C file to an existing Swift app.

Select File/New File/Objective-C File
Xcode will prompt you to create a bridging header.

bridgingheader 2x.png

Once this file has been created, you need to add the following:

#import <NielsenAppApi/NielsenAppApi.h>

Using Objective-C Add the code

#import <NielsenAppApi/NielsenAppApi.h>

to the View Controller’s header file.

SDK Initialization

The latest version of the Nielsen App SDK allows instantiating multiple instances of the SDK object, which can be used simultaneously without any issue. The sharedInstance API that creates a singleton object was deprecated prior to version 5.1.1. (Version 4.0 for Android)

  • A maximum of four SDK instances per appid are supported. When a fifth SDK instance is launched, the SDK will return “nil” from initWithAppInfo:delegate:
  • When four SDK instances exist, you must destroy an old instance before creating a new one.

The following table contains the list of arguments that can be passed via the AppInfo JSON schema.

  • The appid is provided by the Nielsen Technical Account Manager (TAM). The appid is a GUID data type and is specific to the application.
Parameter / Argument Description Source Required/Obligatory? Example
appid Unique id for the application assigned by Nielsen. It is GUID data type. Nielsen-specified PXXXXXXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXXXXXXXXXX
appversion Current version of the app used Client-defined No "1.0.2"
sfcode Nielsen collection facility to which the SDK should connect. Nielsen-specified "dcr"
nol_devDebug Enables Nielsen console logging. Only required for testing Nielsen-specified Optional "DEBUG"


Sample SDK Initialization Code

Swift 4.0 Example: NielsenInit.swift

class NielsenInit: NSObject {
    class func createNielsenAppApi(delegate: NielsenAppApiDelegate) -> NielsenAppApi?{
    let appInformation:[String: String] = [
           "appid": "PDA7D5EE6-B1B8-XXXX-XXXX-2A788BCXXXXX",
            "appversion": "1.0",
            "sfcode": "dcr",
            "nol_devDebug": "DEBUG"
        ]
        return NielsenAppApi(appInfo:appInformation, delegate:delegate)
    }
}


Sample code using AVPlayer.
ViewController.swift

class ViewController: UIViewController, NielsenAppApiDelegate, AVPictureInPictureControllerDelegate, CLLocationManagerDelegate  {
    
    let avPlayerViewController = AVPlayerViewController()
    var avPlayer:AVPlayer?
    var nielsenAppApi: NielsenAppApi!

  override func viewDidLoad() {
        super.viewDidLoad()

self.nielsenAppApi = NielsenInit.createNielsenAppApi(delegate: self)
NSLog("Nielsen SDK initialized")

            }
  }

APP SDK Error & Event Codes

To view the Error and Event codes for iOS, please review the App SDK Event Code Reference page.

Configure Payload

Handling JSON Metadata

All the SDK methods handles only two types of objects: NSString, NSDictionary. The parameters passed must be either a JSON formatted string or a NSDictionary object. The JSON passed in the SDK must be well-formed.

  • NSDictionary object
    • If an object of unexpected type is passed to the method, the error message will be logged.
    • If string has invalid JSON format, the error message will be logged.
  • JSON value must be string value.
    • This includes boolean and numeric values. For example, a value of true should be represented with "true", number value 123 should be "123".
    • All the Variable Names like appid, appname, sfcode, dataSrc, title, type etc. are case-sensitive. Use the correct variable name as specified in the documentation.
  • JSON string can be prepared using either raw NSString or serialized NSDictionary.
       let channelInfo = [
            "channelName": "My Channel Name 1",
];
        
        let contentMetadata = [
                "type": "content",
                "assetid": "88675545",
                "title": "Program S3, EP1",
                "isfullepisode": "n",
                "adloadtype": "2",
                "SegmentB": "custom",
                "SegmentC": "custom",
                "program": "Program Name",
                "length": "3600" 
];

Configure metadata

channelName should remain constant throughout the completion of an episode or live stream.

Key Description Values Required
channelName Any string representing the channel/stream custom


Content Metadata (VOD)

Content metadata should remain constant throughout the completion of an episode / clip including the ads play.

Keys Description Example Required
type 'content', 'ad' 'content' Yes
assetid unique ID assigned to asset custom Yes
program name of program (25 character limit) custom Yes
title name of program (40 character limit) custom Yes
length length of content in seconds seconds Yes
isfullepisode full episode flag "y"- full episode, "n"- non full episode Yes
adloadtype ad model only pass value as 2 2 Yes
segB custom segment B custom
segC custom segment C custom
crossId1 standard episode ID custom
crossId2 content originator (only required for distributors) Nielsen provided


Example Content Object (VOD)

let contentMetadata = [
                "type": "content",
                "assetid": "88675545",
                "title": "Program S3, EP1",
                "isfullepisode": "n",
                "adloadtype": "2",
                "SegmentB": "custom",
                "SegmentC": "custom",
                "program": "Program Name",
                "length": "3600" 
];


Content Metadata (Live Streaming)

Content metadata should remain constant throughout the completion of an episode / clip including the ads play.

Keys Description Example Required
type 'content', 'ad' 'content' Yes
assetid unique ID for each quarter live021 Yes
program name of program (25 character limit) "CH Live" Yes
title Use period as title name per each quarter ”02.00-02.14” Yes
length length of content in seconds 900 Yes
isfullepisode full episode flag 'y'- full episode Yes
adloadtype ad model (only pass value as 2) '2' Yes
segB custom segment B custom
segC custom segment C custom
crossId1 standard episode ID custom
crossId2 content originator (only required for distributors) Nielsen provided

Example Content Object (Live Streaming)

let contentMetadata = [
  type:      'content',
  assetid:   'live021',
  program:   'CHLive',
  title:     '02.00-02.14',
  length:    '900',
  isfullepisode: 'y',
  adloadtype:'2'
];


Ad Metadata

The ad metadata (if applicable) should be passed for each individual ad, if ads are available during or before the stream begins.

Keys Description Values Required
type type of ad 'preroll', 'midroll', or 'postroll'
assetid unique ID assigned to ad custom

Example Ad Object

let adMetadataObject = [
  assetid: 'AD-1',
  type:    'preroll'
];


Configure API Calls

Life cycle of SDK instance

Life cycle of SDK instance includes four general states:

  1. Initial state – The SDK is not initialized and hence, not ready to process playing information. Once the SDK is moved out of this state, it needs instantiation of the new SDK instance in order to get the instance in the Initial state.
  2. Idle state – The SDK is initialized and is ready to process playing information. Once Initialized, the SDK instance is not processing any data, but is listening for the play event to occur.
  3. Processing state – The SDK instance is processing playing information. play and loadMetadata calls move the SDK instance into this state. In this state, the SDK instance will be able to process the following calls.
    1. playheadPosition – Call this API every one second when playhead position timer is fired.
    2. stop – Call this API when the playback is paused, switches between content and ad (within the same content playback) or encounters interruptions.
    3. end – SDK instance exits from Processing state when this API is called.
  4. Disabled state – The SDK instance is disabled and is not processing playing information. SDK instance moves into this state in one of the following scenarios.
    1. Initialization fails
    2. appDisableApi is called

Note: In case of any interruptions during playback due to alarm, calendar, call, flight mode, Wi-Fi toggle, channel change, etc., call stop to stop the measurement.

API Call sequence

Use Case 1: Content has no Advertisements

Call play() with channelName JSON as below.

{
   "channelName": "TheMovieTitle"
}

Call loadMetadata() with JSON metadata for content as below.

{
  "type": "content",
  "assetid": "vid345-67483",
  "program": "ProgramName",
  "title": "Program S3, EP1",
  "length": "3600",
  ...
}

Call setPlayheadPosition() every one second until a pause / stop. Use the sample API sequence below as a reference to identify the specific events that need to be called during content playback without ads.

Type Sample code Description
Start of stream mAppSdk.play(channelName); // channelName contains JSON metadata of channel/video name being played
mAppSdk.loadMetadata(contentMetaDataObject); // contentMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the content being played
Content mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the content is being played
End of Stream mAppSdk.end(); // Content playback is completed.

Use Case 2: Content has Advertisements

Call play() with channelName JSON as below.

{
   "channelName": "TheMovieTitle"
}

Call loadMetadata() with JSON metadata for ad as below.

{
   "type": "preroll",
   "assetid": "ad=123"
}
Note: In case the individual ad details are not available, send ad pod (presence) details through the loadMetadata and playhead position through playheadPosition.

Call setPlayheadPosition() every one second until a pause / stop / another loadMetadata() is called. Playhead should be passed for the entire duration of ad pod, if the ad pod details are passed as part of loadMetadata().

The sample API sequence can be used as a reference to identify the specific events that need to be called during content and ad playback.

Type Sample code Description
Start of stream mAppSdk.play(channelName); // channelName contains JSON metadata of channel/video name being played
mAppSdk.loadMetadata(contentMetaDataObject); // contentMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the content being played
Preroll mAppSdk.loadMetadata(prerollMetadataObject); // prerollMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the preroll ad
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the preroll ad is being played
mAppSdk.stop(); // Call stop after preroll occurs
Content mAppSdk.loadMetadata(contentMetaDataObject); // contentMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the content being played
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the content is being played
mAppSdk.stop(); // Call stop after the content is paused (ad starts)
Midroll mAppSdk.loadMetadata(midrollMetaDataObject); // midrollMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the midroll ad
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the midroll ad is being played
mAppSdk.stop(); // App moves to background(midroll pauses)
mAppSdk.loadMetadata(midrollMetaDataObject); // App moves to foreground (midroll resumes)
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // playheadPosition is position of the playhead while the midroll ad is being played
mAppSdk.stop(); // Call stop after midroll occurs
Content (End of stream) mAppSdk.loadMetadata(contentMetaDataObject); // contentMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the content being played
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the content is being played
End of Stream mAppSdk.end(); // Call end() at the end of content
Postroll mAppSdk.loadMetadata(postrollMetaDataObject); // postrollMetadataObject contains the JSON metadata for the postroll ad
mAppSdk.setPlayheadPosition(playheadPosition); // position is position of the playhead while the postroll ad is being played
mAppSdk.stop(); // Call stop after postroll occurs
Note: Each Ad playhead should reset or begin from 0 at ad start. When content has resumed following an ad break, playhead position must continue from where previous content segment was left off.

Sequence Examples VOD

The example code below will differ from your production application. Provided to assist in explaining how to implement.

play

Use play to pass the channel descriptor information through channelName parameter when the user taps the Play button on the player.

nielsenAppApi?.play(JSONObject channelInfo);

loadMetadata

self.nielsenAppApi?.loadMetadata(contentMetadata)

playheadPosition/setPlayheadPosition

Please note: iOS sdk uses playheadPosition. Android uses setPlayheadPosition.

        //Monitor the Playhead position of the AVPlayer
        let timeInterval: CMTime = CMTimeMakeWithSeconds(1.0,10)
        self.avPlayerViewController.player?.addPeriodicTimeObserver(forInterval: timeInterval, queue: DispatchQueue.main) {(elapsedTime: CMTime) -> Void in
            if self.avPlayerViewController.player!.currentItem?.status == .readyToPlay {
                let time : Float64 = self.avPlayerViewController.player!.currentTime().seconds;
                let pos = Int64(time);
                NSLog("New Elapse Time = \(time)");
                self.nielsenAppApi?.playheadPosition(pos);
            }

stop

self.nielsenAppApi?.stop

end

When content stop is initiated and content cannot be resumed from the same position (it can only be restarted from the beginning of stream).

self.nielsenAppApi?.end


Sequence Examples Live Streaming

The example code below will differ from your production application. Provided to assist in explaining how to implement.

play

Use play to pass the channel descriptor information through channelName parameter when the user taps the Play button on the player.

nielsenAppApi?.play(JSONObject channelInfo);

loadMetadata

Pass metadata for live streaming - Title will be dynamic depend on current time on device that user play the live streaming

self.nielsenAppApi?.loadMetadata(contentMetadata)

playheadPosition/setPlayheadPosition

Please note: iOS sdk uses playheadPosition. Android uses setPlayheadPosition.

        //Monitor the Playhead position of the AVPlayer
        let timeInterval: CMTime = CMTimeMakeWithSeconds(1.0,10)
        self.avPlayerViewController.player?.addPeriodicTimeObserver(forInterval: timeInterval, queue: DispatchQueue.main) {(elapsedTime: CMTime) -> Void in
            if self.avPlayerViewController.player!.currentItem?.status == .readyToPlay {
               var pos: TimeInterval
               pos = Date().timeIntervalSince1970
               self.nielsenAppApi?.playheadPosition(Int64(pos))
            }

When the quarter hour change

end

Call end for the previous quarter hour.

self.nielsenAppApi?.end

play

Call play for start of new quarter hour

nielsenAppApi?.play(JSONObject channelInfo);

loadMetadata

Call loadMetadata and pass content metadata for new quarter hour

self.nielsenAppApi?.loadMetadata(contentMetadata)

playheadPosition/setPlayheadPosition

Please note: iOS sdk uses playheadPosition. Android uses setPlayheadPosition.

        //Monitor the Playhead position of the AVPlayer
        let timeInterval: CMTime = CMTimeMakeWithSeconds(1.0,10)
        self.avPlayerViewController.player?.addPeriodicTimeObserver(forInterval: timeInterval, queue: DispatchQueue.main) {(elapsedTime: CMTime) -> Void in
            if self.avPlayerViewController.player!.currentItem?.status == .readyToPlay {
                var pos: TimeInterval
               pos = Date().timeIntervalSince1970
               self.nielsenAppApi?.playheadPosition(Int64(pos))
            }

Interruptions during playback

As part of integrating Nielsen App SDK with the player application, the Audio / Video app developer needs to handle the following possible interruption scenarios:

  • Pause / Play
  • Network Loss (Wi-Fi / Airplane / Cellular)
  • Call Interrupt (SIM or Third party Skype / Hangout call)
  • Alarm Interrupt
  • Content Buffering
  • Device Lock / Unlock (Video players only, not for Audio players)
  • App going in the Background/Foreground (Video players only, not for Audio players)
  • Channel / Station Change Scenario
  • Unplugging of headphone

In case of encountering one of the above interruptions, the player application needs to

  • Call stop immediately (except when content is buffering) and withhold sending playhead position.
  • Start sending pings – loadMetadata and playheadPosition for the new viewing session, once the playback resumes.

Please see the Digital Measurement FAQ for more details

Handling Foreground and Background states

For iOS, background/foreground detection is handled by the app lifecylce APIs which are provided by Apple:

Foreground/Background state measurement is a requirement of Nielsen AppSDK implementation.

Privacy and Opt-Out

Users must either have access to the "About Nielsen Measurement" page, or have similar text available within the native app. Include "About Nielsen Measurement" and "Your Choices" link in the Privacy Policy / EULA or as a button near the link to the app's Privacy Policy.

  • URL to this web page should be called from SDK by invoking userOptOutURLString() and opened in 'WebView' / External browser.
  • If the App SDK returns NULL as Opt-Out URL, handle the exception gracefully and retry later.
  • To retrieve the current Opt-Out status of a device, use the userOptOutURLString() method.
public String userOptOutURLString()
public boolean getOptOutStatus()


Users can opt out or opt back into Nielsen Measurement. Opt-Out feature relies on the system setting – "Limit Ad Tracking". The setting can be accessed in the Settings application on any device. User is opted out of Nielsen online measurement research when the "Limit Ad Tracking" setting is enabled.

In addition, the following text must be included in your app store description.

"Please note: This app features Nielsen’s proprietary measurement software which contributes to market research. Please see http://priv-policy.imrworldwide.com/priv/mobile/th/en/optout.html for more information"

Going Live

Following Nielsen testing, users need to make one update to the initialization call to ensure that the site is being measured properly.

  1. Debug Logging: Disable logging by deleting {nol_sdkDebug: 'DEBUG'} from initialization call.
    • Example Production Initialization Call - Refer to the production initialization call below:

iOS Example:

class NielsenInit: NSObject {
    class func createNielsenAppApi(delegate: NielsenAppApiDelegate) -> NielsenAppApi?{
    let appInformation:[String: String] = [
            "appid": "PXXXXXXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXXXXXXXXXX",
            "sfcode": "dcr"
            // Remove Flag:   "nol_devDebug": "DEBUG"
        ]
        return NielsenAppApi(appInfo:appInformation, delegate:delegate)
    }
}

Note: before going live you have to inform Nielsen team - this is necessary, because Nielsen team has to adjust internal configuration parameter to enable data collection. Without that notification no data will be collected and no data will be reported.