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IBC exhibitors’ gimmicks and tech toys turn heads

IBC exhibitors’ gimmicks and tech toys turn heads

September 16, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Drones buzzing overhead, a wayward DeLorean, Flamenco dancers, magic tricks — there were enough gimmicks at the IBC Show this year to temporarily distract attendees from the wall-to-wall video processing and delivery technology on the exhibition floor, and the panel sessions detailing the transformation of the broadcast industry across the Amsterdam RAI conference center. Executive Editor Mike Dano compiled a few of this year's visual treats from the show in our latest photo feature. Check it out here .

Finding video Zen: broadcasters, pay-TV struggle to unify traditional video delivery with OTT strategy

September 16, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Forget about disruption. Forget about content cannibalization. The overriding mission from this point forward for the broadcast, pay-TV and media and entertainment industries is to incorporate online video into their structure as seamlessly as possible. That was most obvious to anyone attending the keynotes and panel sessions at this week's IBC Show in Amsterdam. “You can't miss that everyone is talking about OTT,” Roku VP of Pay-TV Andrew Ferrone said of the show, noting that all of the products on display contained OTT integration elements

Broadcast, OTT video complement each other, Sling TV, Kaltura, other execs say at IBC

September 14, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

AMSTERDAM — Traditional television is not being replaced by over-the-top video: In fact, services like Netflix can complement linear TV, some executives are saying at IBC. And while it sounds like rhetoric, there is some hard data coming out that supports the idea. Sling TV's Lynch (Source: ibc.org) “Almost 90 percent of our subscribers have Netflix,” Sling TV CEO Roger Lynch said at a keynote session. “It's really a very complementary service to ours. We have live sports, and Netflix has movies.” Lynch said that his linear OTT service is watched mainly in the living room on the big TV screen, in terms of the number of hours viewed

For Discovery Networks International, it’s all about balance

September 12, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

AMSTERDAM — Making the shift from a primarily cable network to a provider of multiscreen experiences, often directly to viewers over the top, has been a new challenge for Discovery Networks International, the Europe-based wing of Discovery Communications. That's according to its president, JB Perrette, speaking at an opening keynote session at IBC. “We are nimbly moving in a changing landscape … we have been, as most of the industry is, a B2B business,” Perrette said. “Starting to build that B2C capability is not a small task.” At the same time, Discovery is still a linear television network and the bulk of its audience is still the lean-back kind

Google, Scripps, BBC: balancing consumer demand, video technology an expensive proposition

September 10, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

AMSTERDAM–The sky is not falling and TV is not about to go the way of the steam engine, but the broadcast industry over the next several years is facing several challenges, both old and new. Over-the-top video is part of the “new” category, but networks also continue to wrangle with their old nemesis, money, as they balance legacy infrastructure and consumer demand for connected experiences. Those observations were part of the discussion at the IBC Show's opening keynote, “The future is now: broadcasting in an age of challenge.” Moderated by veteran broadcaster Ray Snoddy and featuring speakers from Google, BBC, Scripps Networks International and Middle East-based pay-TV provider OSN, panelists gave an overview of the global television landscape from their points of view

Download My Book For Free: The Business of Streaming and Digital Media

Download My Book For Free: The Business of Streaming and Digital Media

September 8, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Seven years ago one of my books, “ The Business of Streaming and Digital Media ” was published in the NAB Executive Technology Briefing Series and I am now making the 264 page book available as a free PDF download . While the terms “streaming media” and “digital media” are very generic terms these days, and mean different things to different people, the business behind online video is the key. The kind of technology used to deliver audio and video, be it streaming, download, live, on-demand etc.

Amazon Web Services snaps up multiscreen service provider Elemental Technologies

September 3, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Elemental Technologies, a software developer that enables media and entertainment companies to format their video content for over-the-top distribution, has been acquired by Amazon Web Services for an undisclosed amount. Terms of the deal were not released, although The Information said the Portland, Ore.-based provider was purchased for $500 million in an all-cash transaction. A spokesperson for Elemental Technologies told FierceOnlineVideo that the company will retain its brand and product lines after the acquisition closes.

Google developing VP10 encoding, promising to cut online video size by half again

September 1, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) is trying to speed ahead in the encoding race against other high-quality video compression technologies like HEVC/H.265, telling CNET that its engineers are already beginning work on the successor to its current open-source encoding standard, VP9. “We're hoping to hit the performance target by the end of next year,” James Bankoski, engineering product manager for Google, told CNET . Google engineers are adding changes to the company's VPx software project. VP9, and its planned successor VP10, is an open-source technology that, like its competitors, compresses online video so that it takes up less capacity on IP networks, making delivery easier and more reliable. The technology is free to use — an advantage that's getting a lot more attention as a more widely used encoding standard, HEVC, runs into patent fee issues

Facebook on piracy complaints: ‘We’re working on it,’ but effective solution may be far off

September 1, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Following a week of increased media coverage about the massive amount of video content being posted to its site without the content owners' permission — and after months of complaints by YouTube creators in particular, who say the problem has affected their revenues — Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) said it is developing additional tools to automatically detect copyrighted materials. But some are skeptical about the effectiveness of Facebook's promised solution, and its implementation is likely several months away — meaning the freebooting problem may not get better anytime soon. Freebooting, unlike its nautical connotations from yesteryear, is a process of “ripping” a video that's posted on another website, such as YouTube, and then posting the video on one's own Facebook account. (It's different from simply sharing the video via a “share” button or posting a direct link.) The most tangible harm to the content owners is the loss of ad revenue due to far fewer views on their original platform — a video may go viral on Facebook, but few will know the original video is on YouTube, nor will they go and look it up after having seen it already on the social media site.

Netflix stakes big on original content strategy, letting Epix deal lapse and heading for Hollywood

September 1, 2015 by streaming video · Leave a Comment 

Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) is about to go almost all-in on original content: The top SVOD provider's five-year licensing deal with Epix has lapsed, meaning that major movies like The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Transformers: Age of Extinction are off subscribers' plates. But Netflix's executives haven't been all that fussed about the loss of such popular content, even as analysts have fretted. The company is betting even higher on the ability of its original content slate, along with a good-sized Disney deal, to sustain its popularity with OTT viewers. Hulu, which is pursuing an aggressive content acquisition strategy, snapped up the opportunity, signing a deal with Epix that will see much of the premium cable network's content shift over to that SVOD service in the next few weeks, Re/code reports

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