News

The best and worst of NAB 2015

This year's gathering of the National Association of Broadcasters featured unprecedented support for over-the-top video strategies. From that OTT perspective, what were the highs and lows of this annual tradeshow? Which companies had a realistic grasp of the requirements of next-generation video, and which didn't?

Connected TV use to surge as SVOD revenues quadruple to $31.6B by 2019, report says

By 2019, a mere four years from now, subscription revenue from OTT providers like Amazon and Netflix will reach $31.6 billion, four times as much as it did in 2014, when revenues worldwide for SVOD providers totaled $8 billion.

HBO No? Signup problems continue to plague some viewers

HBO's new standalone OTT service, HBO Now, launched two weeks ago, but some subscribers are still struggling to access the service due to a muddled signup process and vague or nonexistent help from HBO itself.

Netflix unapologetic on lower Q1 results as it pledges more spending on original content, international expansion

Netflix set another subscriber record in the first quarter of 2015, chalking up 4.9 million new members worldwide to bring its total to 62.3 million subs. But its international operations took a financial hit, falling by $48 million due partly to a stronger U.S. dollar, the SVOD provider said in a letter to shareholders.

Broadcasters finally embrace OTT tech, even if audience is still in the driver's seat

The halls were alive with the sound of drones this year at NAB, the National Association of Broadcasters' annual fete in Las Vegas. What do drones have to do with online video? On the surface, not much.

Could OTT ad revenue surpass TV's $69B ad revenue in just 5 years? Maybe, panel says

LAS VEGAS--It's happening: Online video companies are beginning to think about the day when revenue from digital video ads surpasses that of traditional television advertising. And while the sheer amount of money being spent on traditional TV--more than $68.5 billion in 2014 compared to about $6 billion for online video--makes that seem a long way off, some believe it's closer than many think.

Akamai, Adobe Primetime team for server-side dynamic ad insertion

LAS VEGAS--Multiscreen provider Adobe Primetime and content delivery network provider Akamai are taking their OTT collaboration a step further with the introduction of a server-side dynamic ad insertion offering. The providers say it will boost reliability and offer the ability to scale massively.

Mandalay's Guber: Engaging viewers essential to digital media success

LAS VEGAS--Companies can rave about or turn their noses up at new IP-based technologies coming down the pike, but what really matters is how those technologies engage the individual, Peter Guber, head of Mandalay Entertainment Group, told an audience here at the National Association of Broadcasters trade show.

NAB's Smith looks to 'next-gen' as future of broadcasting… even as he warns off FCC on incentive auctions

LAS VEGAS--Next-generation technology, particularly IP-based video, is the future for broadcasters, according to NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith in a keynote here, as it "allows us to do more with less," he said. But the National Association of Broadcasters chief still cast a worried eye on the future of over-the-air broadcast spectrum.

Wowza adds live streaming to cloud services package

LAS VEGAS--Online video streaming services provider Wowza is targeting value-conscious providers with its latest cloud-based streaming solution. Wowza Streaming Cloud and the pro version of its Streaming Engine software will give companies of all sizes an economical entry point to provide live streaming to their audiences.

Imagine partners with Disney/ABC, Verizon and HP to fill in puzzle pieces of IP video ecosystem

LAS VEGAS--Imagine Communications is continuing its partnership strategy for end-to-end content delivery, announcing a new relationship with Disney/ABC Television Group that will bring the broadcaster's brick-and-mortar operations into a cloud environment. The news comes on the heels of Imagine's increased content delivery partnership with Verizon Digital Media Services (VDMS) and a collaboration with HP on cloud-based content workflows for its customers.

Popcorn Time lands on iOS, while 'Game of Thrones' piracy spikes

Popcorn Time, the torrent file aggregation platform that won't die, became available this week to iOS device users for the first time, with independent developers releasing an installer that makes it possible to put the app onto Apple devices that haven't been jailbroken.

Navigating the OTT playground means following new rules

Despite all the talk about how online video is changing the viewing landscape, it's still early days for over-the-top technologies, and new business models are still emerging. Forward-thinking pay-TV operators are trying to see OTT as an opportunity, not a threat--and are testing the waters accordingly.

Cannibals' banquet: HBO Now, linear OTT raise the stakes in battle for viewers

It's almost here: On Sunday evening, hit HBO series Game of Thrones will premiere its fifth season. At the same time HBO Now, the network's much-anticipated, or much-dreaded if you're a cable operator, OTT service--which launched a few days early--will get its first real stress test.

Amazon Prime reels in SVOD subscribers, but Netflix binds them, study says

Americans are far more interested in Amazon Prime's free two-day shipping benefit than they are in its streaming video offering, a new study by Strategy Analytics says. In fact, once they're done ordering a physical product from the online retail giant, many viewers then hop on over to Netflix to stream content that can also be found on Prime Instant Video.

HBO Now rolls out on Apple TV, iOS devices; Sling TV to launch HBO this weekend

Owners of an Apple TV streaming device, or an iPhone or iPad, are getting the first look at HBO's new standalone over the top service, HBO Now. The service is now live and accepting subscriptions on those devices.

YouTube ads break FTC rules around children's programming, consumer groups say

The YouTube Kids streaming app, which was launched in February, has come under fire from consumer advocacy groups, which say that its video programming disregards Federal Trade Commission rules that limit the amount and type of advertising around children's programming.

Dailymotion still on the block as Vivendi makes $272M bid

Online video provider Dailymotion, one of the strongest competitors in the user-generated content market dominated by providers like Google's YouTube and Amazon-owned live-streaming service Twitch, could be a Vivendi property soon if a takeover bid made by the media giant holds.

'Star Wars' movies finally available online... but not on Netflix

Collectors can finally re-box their Star Wars DVD collection and enshrine it upon a shelf: The six-movie saga will be available for online download starting Friday, April 10.

Online video threat eclipsed by cybersecurity worries, SCTE chief says

According to SCTE President and CEO Mark Dzuban, Netflix and the threat of OTT is not the biggest of its cable operator members' worries. Not by a long shot.