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IBC 2014 wrap: Content rights loom large as multiscreen moves to the forefront

IBC, arguably the Continent's biggest broadcasting and media conference, can be a bit dizzying. Going over notes in the wake of a five-day whirlwind of conference sessions, meetings and networking events is a somewhat herculean task. But paging through two notebooks' worth of material revealed a few underlying trends at this year's event.

Cable channels on OTT: Listen to the audience, but don't forget the brand

AMSTERDAM--Content providers, cable companies and distributors trying to figure out where to put their online investment dollars would be wise to invest in content rights and distribution, panelists said at an IBC 2014 session here on managing content portfolios. But to make the right decisions, they need to strike a balance between viewer preferences and maintaining the integrity of their brand.

Bouygues Telecom to make Netflix available to subscribers

France-based Bouygues Telecom has signed a deal to make Netflix available on its set-top boxes and to mobile devices beginning in November. The announcement coincided with Netflix's launch into the country, one that the industry is watching closely as the online video provider expands further into a wary European market. FierceWireless:Europe has all the details here.

Netflix peering dispute with Verizon, Comcast intentional, pundit says

Subscription video on demand provider Netflix may have intentionally caused slowdowns of its own video stream during its well-publicized disputes with Verizon and Comcast, the director of a conservative technology organization said.

Archived content providers battle broadcasters for share of OTT market

The online video explosion appears, on the surface, to be a great environment for content owners to redistribute older television shows and movies. After all, Netflix built a huge business on licensing existing content, long before it leaped into original series. However, it's not easy being an archive in today's market, according to panelists at an IBC session here.

PCs still hold sway for OTT viewing audience, survey says

The personal computer remains the preferred viewing device for over-the-top video worldwide, followed by tablets and smartphones, a new survey conducted by SPB TV reveals. But the television is still holding its own as a home for high-quality "destination" viewing such as sports.

No longer hunting for a 'Netflix killer,' broadcasters, MSOs trend toward integration

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. As we've noted recently, over-the-top providers like Hulu and Netflix are no longer stealing a march on traditional distributors. Broadcasters like CBS, cable operators, channels like A+E Networks and others are finally making multiscreen a bigger priority--as long as the technology fits within their current moneymaking model.

Hulu, ESPN: Mobile a 'critical' part of online video business

LAS VEGAS--Mobile viewers are becoming an increasingly important part of online video providers' strategies, such that these providers are building specific services and ad campaigns for wireless users.

Mediacom VP Larsen: Programming costs put 'huge strain' on pay TV model

What lies ahead for mid-sized pay-TV operators? With TV Everywhere struggling to rise, Local Choice on Congress' menu, and programming costs still spiraling, it's an interesting time for MSOs like Blooming Grove, N.Y.-based Mediacom. FierceCable Editor Dan Frankel spoke with Mediacom Group VP of Legal and Public Affairs Thomas Larsen about the state of the smaller operator. Read more

Feud over? Verizon FiOS climbs Netflix speed chart

Now that interconnection agreements with the four top U.S. Internet service providers are in place and with no new spats grabbing the public's attention, Netflix and Verizon may have entered a period of détente. Average streaming speeds for subscribers on the FiOS network rose two places on the SVOD provider's August Speed Index, to 2.41 Mbps.

MobiTV, Brightstar partner on multiscreen device distribution

Wireless distributor Brightstar is partnering with multiscreen solutions provider MobiTV to help distribute its white-label HDMI dongle, MobiTV Connect.

Facebook video views jump after auto-play feature tweak

Social media stalwart Facebook is making itself seen in the online video space. The website is serving about 1 billion videos per day to its members, and thanks to its ability to make a video go viral quickly, has seen a big jump in views since changing the way videos are displayed in news feeds last year.

Record-breaking week may be ahead for Internet streaming, analyst says

Could Internet traffic records be broken this week? With no less than 13 major media events scheduled since Sunday--including Apple's latest product announcement, a live Aerosmith concert via Yahoo!, and several sporting events, all with live streaming options--viewers could be turning online more than ever before, according to Streaming Media analyst Dan Rayburn.

Netflix trialing short-form content for its mobile apps

Watching movies and hour-long TV shows on a smartphone can be more of a chore than an enjoyable experience, and it appears that Netflix is taking notice. According to GigaOm, the SVOD provider is testing short clips on its mobile apps that run about two to five minutes. Current clips include key scenes from TV shows and movies or bits from stand-up comedy specials.

Amazon's key to profitability in Twitch acquisition

Amazon's $970 million acquisition of Twitch is one of the most talked-about business deals this summer. How Amazon swooped in and nabbed the live-streaming service after months of talks with Google faltered, and more importantly, why the retail giant bought Twitch, is generating plenty of comment. Much of it is outright confusion.

Dish Network's OTT service may be called 'Nutv'

Dish Network has quietly filed a trademark application for the name "Nutv," which GigaOm speculates is to be the name for its planned OTT programming service.

Amazon CFO Szkutak to step down next year

The senior vice president and chief financial officer for Amazon, Tom Szkutak, announced plans to retire from the online retail giant in June 2015. He will be replaced by Brian Olsavsky, currently VP of finance for the company's global consumer unit.

Online advertising drives Q2 ad growth, YouTube revenue projected to hit $5.9B in 2014, reports say

Broadcasting and cable marketers take note: Online advertising now makes up roughly one-third of the total advertising market, and is picking up steam, growing 21 percent in the second quarter of 2014, a new report by MoffettNathanson says. More telling, however: In the second quarter, online advertising was the biggest driver, accounting for 98 percent of the market's growth.

Netflix sides with muni broadband in quest to upend state laws

As Netflix prepares to increase the content it's delivering in 4K/UHD, a bandwidth-hungry video format, the SVOD provider promoted, in comments to the FCC, municipal broadband providers' ability to quickly bring U.S. residents up to the Internet capacity necessary to view Ultra HD.

Samsung announces 4K content deal with Amazon

TV manufacturer Samsung is hoping to boost 4K TV sales by giving consumers a good deal more content to actually watch in 4K, announcing a new deal with Amazon to deliver its original series and some movies in Ultra High Def (UHD, or 4K), starting in October.