Dish Plans to Launch its Internet TV Service Later This Year

Dish Network Chairman Charlie Ergen announced he has signed new deals with programmers to add channels to the company’s Internet TV service that he plans to launch by the end of 2014. The over-the-top (OTT) service is aimed at young cord-cutters who may opt to forgo an expensive cable package for a cheaper offering of channels that can be streamed on smart TVs and other devices. Dish Network already has a deal with Disney to offer channels such as ABC and ESPN. Continue reading Dish Plans to Launch its Internet TV Service Later This Year

Apple Reportedly Getting Ready to Spend $3.2 Billion on Beats

Insiders say Apple is in talks for a proposed $3.2 billion acquisition of Beats Electronics, which would provide Apple with Beats’ headphone business and recently-launched subscription music service. Although Apple disrupted the music business when it launched iTunes in 2003, it has recently faced declining download sales as consumers increasingly turn to subscription services. If the Beats deal goes through, it would be Apple CEO Tim Cook’s boldest and most expensive acquisition to date. Continue reading Apple Reportedly Getting Ready to Spend $3.2 Billion on Beats

TV Networks to Benefit by Unbundling from Cable Packages?

Television networks are currently entangled in expensive negotiations with cable companies over retransmission fees and rights to stream content on other devices. However, if a TV network were to sell its shows directly online with a Netflix-like subscription, GigaOM speculates that the network could still remain profitable and consumers would not have to pay for expensive cable packages. This new model could potentially redefine content distribution via the Internet and television. Continue reading TV Networks to Benefit by Unbundling from Cable Packages?

Walmart Beefing Up its E-Commerce Efforts to Catch Amazon

Walmart has surpassed online retail giant Amazon in sales growth for the first time in a decade. Global online sales for Walmart rose by 30 percent in 2013 to $10 billion, while Amazon experienced 20 percent sales growth. However, Amazon’s $67.8 billion in online sales are more than six times Walmart’s sales, and Amazon sold more last year than its next 10 largest competitors. To better compete with Amazon, Walmart is investing significantly in e-commerce. Continue reading Walmart Beefing Up its E-Commerce Efforts to Catch Amazon

Expensive Video Ads on Facebook Are Reserved For The Best

Facebook is steadily becoming a formidable player in the digital advertising industry. The social network will start integrating auto-playing video ads on users’ Facebook news feeds. Facebook’s unique ability to target audiences precisely could give it an edge in the market, even though video ads on Facebook cost about $1 million a day. Ace Metric and Facebook have been working together since last year to create a fAce rating to help select the “meaningful” commercials. Continue reading Expensive Video Ads on Facebook Are Reserved For The Best

Branded Video Content Migrates from TV to Online Platforms

At the 2014 NewFronts presentations, online video content providers revealed that product placement will play a larger role in video content. Just as TV shows feature certain brands, online videos may soon have integrated brands in their story lines. The practice, known as branded entertainment, may provide a new source of revenue for video content providers with original programming. Also, viewers typically find branded entertainment less obtrusive than traditional video ads. Continue reading Branded Video Content Migrates from TV to Online Platforms

Media Companies Partner With YouTube Startups, Target Teens

Large media companies, such as Disney, AOL, DreamWorks, Warner Bros. and Yahoo, are teaming up with startups that produce YouTube videos popular in the teen and tween age groups. Disney acquired Maker Studios for $500 million in March. AOL and Yahoo have discussed an acquisition deal with Fullscreen. DreamWorks is creating a multichannel network. These deals usually involve advertising agreements in which media companies help YouTube stars sell ads in return for a cut of the profits. Continue reading Media Companies Partner With YouTube Startups, Target Teens

F8: Facebook Introduces Ad Network, App Tools and New Motto

At Facebook’s F8 developer conference in San Francisco, CEO Mark Zuckerberg unveiled Facebook’s newest projects that emphasize app development for third parties. The company’s motto “move fast and break things” has become less relevant as Facebook grows and third party apps rely increasingly on Facebook databases. The new ad network and app development tools will make it easier for third party app developers to create apps with Facebook functions. Continue reading F8: Facebook Introduces Ad Network, App Tools and New Motto

LinkedIn Hopes to Grow Audience with User Generated Content

Social network LinkedIn brought in $473.2 million in revenue for the first quarter of 2014. The company’s plan for the coming years is to increase the number of users and the frequency that those users visit the site by focusing on content posted by well-known professionals and everyday users alike. Currently, LinkedIn has 300 million people signed up for an account on their site, but during Q1, it had only 186 million unique visitors monthly via computers. Continue reading LinkedIn Hopes to Grow Audience with User Generated Content

Rdio to Launch Free, Ad-Supported Music Service This Year

Music service Rdio is planning a free, ad-supported offering to launch later this year. The service is also expected to add more non-music content and morning shows from Cumulus, which became a significant investor in Rdio last year. Some of that may include sports and talk show content from WestWood One, which Cumulus recently acquired. Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey introduced the new ad-supported model during a Q1 earnings call earlier this week. Continue reading Rdio to Launch Free, Ad-Supported Music Service This Year

Canopy Aims to Showcase the Beautiful Products on Amazon

While Amazon has almost anything that most consumers need, the volume of products can be daunting for those who want to casually browse the site or discover well-designed or high-end products. Canopy is a website created by former Google designers that hopes to solve this problem by offering a curated storefront for products available via Amazon. Canopy offers a front-end alternative, while relying on Amazon’s back-end to make products available in just a few clicks. Continue reading Canopy Aims to Showcase the Beautiful Products on Amazon

Digital Media Companies Present for Marketers at NewFronts

The Digital Content NewFronts are an annual event in which companies that offer digital video give marketers a preview of their upcoming programming so that marketers will consider buying commercials ahead of time. This year, the growing event featured The New York Times, AOL, Microsoft, BuzzFeed and others. Among the newest offerings, Condé Nast will announce its plans to rapidly expand its online video content at its NewFronts presentation next week. Continue reading Digital Media Companies Present for Marketers at NewFronts

Social Media: What the Lengthy Terms of Service Really Mean

While most social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook give users the ability to choose how they share their posts, with options such as followers, friends, or public, most users do not realize that terms of service allows the sites to reproduce the content for marketing purposes. The terms of service that users are required to agree to in order to sign up for a social network are often lengthy and comprised of complex legal terms, resulting in many users agreeing to terms they do not fully understand. Continue reading Social Media: What the Lengthy Terms of Service Really Mean

Pinterest Touts 30 Billion Pins, Sees Big Hit in Related Pins

Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann announced during an event in San Francisco last week that users of the social visual discovery tool have created more than 750 million boards and contributed more than 30 billion Pins since Pinterest was founded in 2010. Acording to Silbermann, the number of Pins has grown by nearly 50 percent during the past six months, due in part to the introduction of Related Pins about a year ago. More than 90 percent of current Pins are connected to Related Pins. Continue reading Pinterest Touts 30 Billion Pins, Sees Big Hit in Related Pins

AT&T and Chernin Group Invest $500 Million in Online Video

AT&T announced a joint venture with The Chernin Group to commit $500 million to buy and launch Internet video services. Video content is foreign territory for AT&T, while Chernin’s only foothold is a majority stake in anime streaming service, Crunchyroll. Together, the two organizations have pledged to “acquire, invest in and launch over-the-top video services.” AT&T’s move into streaming services comes on the heels of similar projects by competitors such as Verizon and Dish Network. Continue reading AT&T and Chernin Group Invest $500 Million in Online Video

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