The impressive gains that Netflix and Amazon are enjoying in the video space are hard to ignore: From Kevin Spacey in House of Cards to Amazon's recent announcement that Woody Allen will write a show for the company's Instant Video streaming video service, it's clear that quality, scripted content is increasingly moving online.
The Kudelski Group and Netflix announced that they've entered a long-term, "comprehensive" product relationship, dismissed all U.S. patent litigation over Kudelski-owned Nagra and OpenTV products, and put a stay on related litigation in the Netherlands.
Finally, our long national nightmare may be over: Scripted, original TV series are a hot property in Hollywood again, displacing the decade-long popularity of reality shows like Jersey Shore and the seemingly bottomless pool of Real Housewives. It's largely thanks to the challenge laid at their feet by Netflix and Amazon with original content drives that stole away millions of viewers in the past couple years. But can traditional TV handle the cost of original series?
Verizon has once again taken the top spot on Netflix's monthly U.S. ISP Speed Index, maintaining its lead over a group of aggressive cable operators that are gaining ground in the speed race.
A group of Democratic leaders have incited a new political debate over what direction net neutrality should take by reintroducing a bill that would put a ban on paid prioritization agreements between content providers like Netflix and ISPs like AT&T and Verizon.
Comparing premium cable networks like Starz, HBO and Showtime, with their subscription-only requirements, to Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, which rely solely on subscribers for revenue, Starz CEO Chris Albrecht told investors this week that established players in the media and entertainment industry--networks, distributors and MVPDs--need to start playing the same game as subscription video on demand providers. And that means creating more original content and finding innovative ways to expand their subscriber base.
Viewers are getting their daily Netflix fix more often than ever before. According to a new report by Leichtman Research Group, 36 percent of subscribers to the service that it surveyed stream video daily, and 72 percent stream it weekly.
Sony said its comedy The Interview generated about $15 million in revenue from online sales to around 2 million Web users in the U.S. and Canada during the film's first weekend of availability. The numbers are notable considering The Interview is the first major motion picture to be released online and in theaters at the same time.
As independent theaters queued up to commit to screening North Korea's current least favorite movie ever, The Interview, Sony announced that the movie will also be available to stream online via several streaming outlets including YouTube, Google Play, and Microsoft Xbox Video, beginning Christmas Eve. What's more, Netflix is reportedly interested in making the movie available to its subscribers soon.
Those in the online video industry got to see their market mature significantly during 2014. After years of mediocre content and audience that forced the segment to take a backseat to pay TV, the online video space blossomed this year with headlining developments.