Discovery Communications is the first programmer to sign up for TNS Media's new audience measurement service, DIRECTView.
The service uses satellite company DirecTV's set-top boxes to collect data on live and time-shifted audience ratings on a "second-by-second" basis, according to TNS.
The sample is 100,000 boxes projectable to DirecTV's 17 million subs.
Discovery had already been working with TNS since 2007 to measure viewing to its HD channel using set-top data from cable operator Charter Communications.
"In today's competitive marketplace, it is imperative that Discovery remain ahead of the curve and work with innovative companies to provide more precise and detailed viewer research," said Discovery’s chief marketing officer, Wonya Lucas, in announcing the agreement. "As Discovery continues its quest to satisfy curiosity and support marketers’ goals for increased value and accountability, the DIRECTView service offers a new level of intelligence and a strategic edge to our programming and advertising strategies."