ABS-CBN Doubles Localization Speed with LocAI

Ayushman Dash

ABS-CBN is expanding into AI-driven workflow management with NeuralSpace. Together, we've created LocAI, a content localization platform that will broaden the reach of its programming through digital distribution. This collaboration will enhance content selection for ABS-CBN viewers, and open new avenues for growth, bringing Filipino news and culture to global audiences. 

“Investing in AI was a straightforward decision for us. We've already observed significant efficiency gains in post-production, and we expect our ROI to grow as our AI model evolves and enhances its performance.” 
Rab Mukraj, CTO at ABS-CBN International

ABS-CBN Corporation

ABS-CBN Corporation is one of Philippines’ leading media and entertainment companies, with service offerings across the different platforms of media and servicing a wide array of customers.

The company delivers television programming outside of the Philippines to over 3 million viewers in North America., the Middle East, Europe, Japan, Australia, Canada, and other countries in Asia, through the internet and the its global distribution platform The Filipino Channel or TFC.

Expanding reach through multi-platform distribution

ABS-CBN had the ambitious goal to reduce post-production timelines and operational costs while increasing the variety of content available to consumers.

In the competitive media landscape, captivating viewer attention requires a constant flow of high-quality programming. ABS-CBN, with its extensive back-catalog of shows and movies, identified scripting and subtitling their content for OTT platform readiness as a crucial strategy for growth. 

Lightening the load of labor-intensive tasks

TFC's dedicated team of writers, supported by freelancers for foreign languages, tackled the substantial challenge of subtitling approximately 1 million minutes of content annually. Their primary focus was on translating foreign language scripts into Tagalog and manually transcribing scripts for locally produced content in their vast back catalog.

TFC's subtitling operation was highly labor-intensive, requiring 12 hours of manual effort for each hour of content processed. This approach not only slowed the release of new content but also proved to be unscalable, leading to costs that increased linearly.

Consolidated Fragmented Systems

In collaboration with their writers, ABS-CBN scoped technology solutions to streamline the localization workflow, from scripting, to translation, and the application of subtitles. While several vendors could support aspects of this process, none could provide a comprehensive end-to-end solution.

“With LocAI, we've found a single solution that manages our entire localization workflow, eliminating the headache of integrating multiple tools for different parts of the process.”
Erwin Malmban, Head of Broadcast Technology at ABS-CBN International

Delivering more value for viewers and advertisers 

With LocAI, ABS-CBN has significantly sped up its localization process, now delivering projects two times faster than before. This acceleration diversifies the range of shows available and brings much-loved classics back to the small screen. As the content library grows, subscribers find more reasons to renew, driven by the increased value and variety that its channels offer.

By employing a hybrid monetization model, ABS-CBN channels balance advertising and subscription fees to keep prices low for consumers. As it extends reach to more overseas Filipinos and taps into new international audiences, it broadens its advertising appeal significantly.

This strategic enhancement of its offerings for both advertisers and viewers has strengthened its revenue opportunity, creating a win-win situation for both ABS-CBN and its viewers.

“With LocAI, we've cut our project turnaround time by up to 50%. The AI handles the bulk of scripting and translation, freeing our team to focus on review and approval. Our weekly content output has significantly increased!” 
John Paul Villanueva, Head of Subtitling and Captioning Ops at ABS-CBN

Investing today’s data, in tomorrow’s AI

As part of a multi-year digital transformation strategy, Rab Mukraj, CTO at ABS-CBN, is carefully evaluating and reshaping established processes to incorporate AI. To support this optimization, they've opted to develop an AI model exclusively owned by ABS-CBN and operated by Neuralpace. 

This ensures their Intellectual Property stays private, serving solely to enhance their proprietary model.

As the self-improving model learns from ABS-CBN's dataset, it will enhance the accuracy of its outputs. Since the implementation of LocAI, ABS-CBN has already realized cost savings of almost 50% through decreased operational overheads. As the AI model becomes more refined, the requirement for manual interventions will decrease, leading to even greater cost efficiencies.

Putting people first with AI-assistance 

At the heart of LocAI's development was a commitment to putting people first, crafted through close collaboration with the creative minds at ABS-CBN, including writers, translators, and team leads. 

Designed with the goal to support rather than supplant human effort, LocAI prioritizes enhancing teamwork with tools that are intuitive to use. 

By adopting LocAI in their localization workflow, ABS-CBN has transformed the way transcription, translation, and subtitle generation tasks are handled, resulting in:

  • Elevated roles for team members. Shifting from manual tasks to roles focusing on review and approval, enhancing their productivity.
  • Instant script generation from audio and video content.
  • One-click machine translation to localize scripts in more than 70 languages.
  • Automatic generation of subtitles that adhere to specific brand guidelines.

This division of labor ensures that the human touch is preserved where it matters most, while the heavy lifting is managed by AI.

“Onboarding our team with LocAI was a breeze. Its intuitive design is accessible for everyone, regardless of their experience with editing software.”
Ramoncito Remo, Metadata Monitoring Specialist at ABS-CBN

Learn more about LocAI 

LocAI streamlines your localization workflows. It offers accurate speech-to-text transcription, machine translation in over 70 languages, and a powerful editing tool for subtitle generation. By customizing our AI model with your data, we ensure LocAI not only meets but exceeds your quality standards and operational requirements.

Book a demo or contact us at sales@neuralspace.ai to learn more. You can also visit our website www.neuralspace.ai/locai to explore product features and articles.

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