News

NBC's Super Bowl stream logs 1.3M viewers, complaints of video delay

NBC Sports said it recorded the highest number of online viewers ever for a Super Bowl, 1.3 million, along with its highest-ever TV audience. What's more, use of connected devices--smart TVs and Wi-Fi-enabled tablets, for example--jumped 150 percent higher than normal during the live-streamed championship game.

Parks on HBO cord-cutting worries: Don't panic

Smoothing down fears that 7 million consumers might cancel their pay-TV subscriptions this year once HBO launches its over-the-top subscription service, Parks Associates added a bit of context to its initial report. The gist? Don't panic…yet.

The downside of programmatic: AOL lays off 150 staffers, most in ad sales

Web and online video portal AOL laid off 150 employees, mostly from its advertising sales unit, saying its increased reliance on programmatic buying (an automated way to sell and place online ads) has made their jobs superfluous.

Streaming video revenue's $3.2B jump a rallying cry for OTT providers in broadband speed battle

Revenue from streaming video services jumped 175 percent between 2010 and 2013, from $1.86 billion to $5.12 billion. That massive rise in dollars being thrown at online video is part of the reason why raising the broadband speed bar in the U.S. to 25 Mbps is absolutely essential to continued economic growth, according to Internet Association President Michael Beckerman.

Amazon's Prime streaming subs drive its overall sales; membership jumps 53%

Customers who join Amazon Prime specifically to stream video through its Prime Instant Video service tend to buy more often from other areas of the retail giant's website as well. And while it doesn't seem like much, it's important to note that Prime membership overall increased 53 percent in 2014.

StreamNation acquires PictureLife, shifting toward one-stop shop for streaming media storage

Cloud storage and stream-back provider StreamNation has acquired PictureLife, a New York-based startup specializing in online photo storage, for an undisclosed amount.

WWE Network breaks 1M subscribers, but is it enough to be profitable?

WWE's online video gamble, WWE Network, has crossed its first big subscriber benchmark, passing 1 million subscribers this week.

Cablevision's Wi-Fi phone service isn't much now, but just wait

Cablevision took its first step into the wireless world Monday, by introducing a Wi-Fi-only phone service, Freewheel, that its subscribers can get for $10 a month. But with its limited service--Wi-Fi works only where hotspots and wireless routers are available, and doesn't do handoffs the way cellular technology does--it's hardly a threat to incumbent carriers like AT&T.

SlingTV could be the tipping point for a cord-cutting stampede

A recent survey by Parks Associates found that 17 percent of U.S. broadband households are likely to subscribe to HBO's over-the-top video service, once it launches this spring. That's an encouraging number, but not exactly an overwhelming pledge to try OTT services. Could Dish Network's new OTT offering, Sling TV, sway those cord-maybes?

Popcornflix app hits 10M downloads milestone

Ad-supported online streaming service Popcornflix said its app has been downloaded more than 10 million times, a figure combined from app downloads to a number of devices including Roku players, game consoles, mobile devices and smart TVs.

Imagine buys RGB Networks, adding dynamic ad insertion to OTT, TV Everywhere offerings

Imagine Communications is adding a dynamic ad insertion component to its online video infrastructure portfolio, acquiring RGB Networks for an undisclosed amount.

Netflix's big week: SAG awards its originals, and 'The Interview' scores with subs

The Emmy committee may not have been so friendly to Netflix's highly nominated original series Orange Is The New Black, but the Screen Actors Guild was much more generous, honoring the SVOD-only show with two of its bigger awards on Sunday night.

Walmart's Vudu stick launches quietly, but will it make a spark against Chromecast?

As predicted, Walmart is now selling an HDMI streaming stick, the Vudu Spark, designed to work with its Vudu transactional online video service--albeit in a limited rollout, to about 2,400 of its stores, Gigaom reports.

CableLabs' McKinney helps cable TV stay in the innovation game

The cable television industry in the recent past could hardly be called innovative. But that has changed as a slew of disruptive technologies, including online video, rapidly developing mobile devices, and other pay-TV entrants, such as IPTV providers and their fiber-based networks, challenged traditional cable's dominance.

With CuriosityStream, Hendricks aims to fill an SVOD niche

It's been a long, strange trip for video on demand over the past few years, but thanks to over-the-top streaming, the concept of VOD is finally coming into its own. One person who's excited about the potential of OTT is John Hendricks, founder of the Discovery Channel and until last year the chairman of Discovery Communications. Hendricks spoke with Samantha Bookman, editor of FierceOnlineVideo, about the soon-to-be-launched SVOD service, the content niche it fills, and the parallels he sees between the cable revolution of the mid-1970s and today's online-video disruption.

Sling TV marketed to younger audience, but could appeal to older demographic

Cord cutting has largely been seen as the domain of millennials: that younger generation with lots of tech savvy but not much money. However, an analysis of Dish Network's new OTT service, Sling TV, finds that its basic channel lineup skews to a much older audience.

Netflix tops 57.4 million members in record-setting 2014

Subscription video on demand provider Netflix added a record 13 million new subscribers in 2014, bringing its total subs worldwide to 57.4 million. It was the first in a line of good news for investors, as CEO Reed Hastings said that the provider's subscription rate was in line with its forecast for the fourth quarter.

NBC to live-stream Super Bowl free of charge--to everyone except smartphone users

The Super Bowl itself just became a giant marketing vehicle for NBCUniversal, which will live-stream the game and its preshow coverage to anyone who accesses its TV Everywhere service on Feb. 1, without requiring authentication or a pay-TV subscription.

Amazon explores narrowed theatrical-release strategy, appoints indie veteran Hope to lead unit

Online retail giant and SVOD provider Amazon is dipping a toe in the traditional movie-release waters, announcing an original-movies program that will see its movies available via Prime Instant Video within four to eight weeks after their release on the big screen.

Pai claims Netflix refuses to disprove Open Connect fast-lane allegations

FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai wants to know why Netflix isn't getting back to him on details about encryption protocols it is allegedly using to target the open caching servers of certain large Internet service providers.