Google Serves Quarter of Internet Traffic in North America

About 25 percent of North American consumer Internet traffic is served by Google, more than that of Facebook, Netflix and Instagram combined, an increase from 6 percent three years ago. Estimates are that the majority of Google’s traffic is from YouTube — the rest involving searches, analytics, and advertising. To deal with the increase in Internet traffic, the company has data centers in the Americas, Europe and Asia, and has other distribution strategies. Continue reading Google Serves Quarter of Internet Traffic in North America

Hulu Changes Focus To Original Series with ‘The Awesomes’

Hulu is focusing on its own original programming with “The Awesomes,” the video service’s first animated series and first original show this year. This marks a change of direction for the company, which was until recently entertaining bids for acquisition. Its emphasis on original programming reflects its new intention to compete with services such as Netflix and Amazon. Hulu will also join with sponsors to make new, brand integrated shows in order to generate advertising revenue. Continue reading Hulu Changes Focus To Original Series with ‘The Awesomes’

Apple Pitches Ad-Skipping Tech for its Proposed TV Service

Apple has been in discussions with cable companies and television networks for more than a year regarding licensing agreements for a new service that would allow viewers to access live and on-demand television via an Apple set-top box or TV. In recent discussions, the company reportedly told media execs it hopes to offer a premium version that enables viewers to skip ads. According to people briefed on the discussions, Apple would compensate networks for the lost revenue. Continue reading Apple Pitches Ad-Skipping Tech for its Proposed TV Service

Foursquare Leverages Check-Ins for Full-Page Mobile Ads

Social network Foursquare has started rolling out full-page post check-in ads in its mobile apps. The ads are presented to users immediately after they check in at certain locations, typically offering a relevant suggestion or coupon. The Diageo-owned Captain Morgan rum brand is one of the first on board. For example, users who check in at certain bars or restaurants will be served an ad suggesting they order a “Captain and cola” or “Captain mojito.” Continue reading Foursquare Leverages Check-Ins for Full-Page Mobile Ads

Report: App Economy Expected to Double in Value by 2017

Research firm AppNation forecasts a dramatic increase in the overall app economy in the U.S. over the next four years. The AppNation report predicts that the combined value of paid apps, app-enabled purchases of goods and services, and in-app advertising will double to $151 billion by 2017. While smartphones and tablets largely drive today’s app economy, innovations with smart TVs and connected cars are expected to help drive future app commerce. Continue reading Report: App Economy Expected to Double in Value by 2017

New Wireless Model: Earn Data Over Time with Aquto App

Boston-based startup Aquto launched this week with an interesting business model, one that allows wireless customers to pay for data by watching ads, taking surveys, downloading apps, or devoting time to a brand. For example, if a consumer views a 30-second ad via the Aquto app, that individual could earn 5 or 10 megabytes, about enough to download some images or check an inbox. Aquto is limited to Vodafone customers in Portugal, but plans to roll out in the U.S. next month with a “very large carrier.” Continue reading New Wireless Model: Earn Data Over Time with Aquto App

Ingress Brings Augmented Reality to Mobile Video Gaming

Google’s internal startup Niantic Labs has created a game called “Ingress” that is still in closed beta release. It is an augmented reality, massive multiplayer video game that uses location-based augmented reality of actual locations as game play. The augmented reality is based on where the player is physically, and adds layers to the game based on the surroundings. “Ingress” also opens up some compelling possibilities for advertisers. Continue reading Ingress Brings Augmented Reality to Mobile Video Gaming

Hulu Owners Call Off Sale, Announce New Investment Plans

The three companies that mutually own Hulu announced on Friday that they would not be selling the video site, bringing an end to months of bidding and speculation. Instead, the current owners of Hulu — 21st Century Fox, Disney and NBCUniversal — explained that they plan to invest $750 million to compete against online video services such as Netflix and Amazon. Until Friday’s announcement, DirecTV with its $1 billion offer was considered by many to be the leading bidder. Continue reading Hulu Owners Call Off Sale, Announce New Investment Plans

Audiam Finds New Ways to Pay Indie Musicians via YouTube

“Love Doctor,” a two-minute acid jazz instrumental is used in about 1,500 YouTube videos that do not pay for the rights to do so. The composer, Scott Schreer, has been working with New York startup Audiam in an effort to share in the advertising revenue associated with the videos. While serving as the Audiam test case, “Love Doctor” and Schreer’s library of 1,700 songs are generating about $30,000 per month for their use on the video site. Continue reading Audiam Finds New Ways to Pay Indie Musicians via YouTube

Carlos Slim Invests in Shazam to Expand its Advertising Biz

The British music identification app, Shazam, recently received a $40 million investment from the world’s second richest man, Carlos Slim. Not known for seeding startups, Slim first made his fortune in the Mexican mobile phone industry, so funding a mobile app company is not farfetched. With Slim’s investment, Shazam is positioned to expand its current services in advertising and looks to grow in new international markets. Continue reading Carlos Slim Invests in Shazam to Expand its Advertising Biz

Fullscreen Launches Creator Platform for YouTube Producers

Digital media firm Fullscreen — which hosts more than 15,000 YouTube channels with 200 million subscribers and 2.5 billion monthly views — has launched a suite of apps designed to help content creators monetize videos through search engine optimization and partnership facilitation. The new Fullscreen Creator Platform also includes analytics tools for insight into audience behavior. In addition, Fullscreen has announced a free iOS app for tracking video performance from phones (Android coming soon). Continue reading Fullscreen Launches Creator Platform for YouTube Producers

Graph Search: Facebook Rolls Out Radical New Social Tool

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Graph Search earlier this year, a new way for users of the social network to access information. Considered the network’s third pillar, along with its News Feed and Timeline, Graph Search is based on Facebook’s social graph, which is essentially a map of more than a trillion connections between users. After six months of beta testing, the product is now available to those who use the American English version of the site. Continue reading Graph Search: Facebook Rolls Out Radical New Social Tool

Shift in Consumer Demand: Should Studios Emulate Pirates?

Hollywood studios are reexamining traditional distribution models in an era of piracy enabled by digital technologies. Today’s media savvy consumers have evolving expectations regarding how they discover and share music, video content and games, thanks in part to new cloud-based technologies, streaming media services and sophisticated social tools. Some media companies are even considering the idea that models popular with pirates are worth imitating. Continue reading Shift in Consumer Demand: Should Studios Emulate Pirates?

Tribune to Acquire 19 Local TV Stations in $2.7 Billion Deal

The Tribune Company has agreed to pay about $2.73 billion to acquire all 19 television stations from Local TV Holdings, which is owned by investment firm Oak Hill Capital Partners. Tribune, which already owns 23 local TV outlets and is looking to possibly sell some or all of its newspapers, will become one of the country’s largest station groups through the deal (and the biggest holder of Fox affiliates). The 19 stations cover areas from Scranton to Salt Lake City. Continue reading Tribune to Acquire 19 Local TV Stations in $2.7 Billion Deal

Industry Leaders Share Thoughts at the Aspen Ideas Festival

Now in its ninth year, the Aspen Ideas Festival (June 26-July 2) gathers thought leaders from a wide range of areas such as economics, policy, environment, science, education, arts, global affairs and philosophy. Presented by the Aspen Institute and The Atlantic, this year’s event includes discussions on a number of compelling media topics. We’ve gathered some of the more interesting quotes from leaders in social media, film and television, online distribution and more. Continue reading Industry Leaders Share Thoughts at the Aspen Ideas Festival

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