Attention Broadcasters: Mobile Video Viewing is on the Rise

According to a study from Ooyala, mobile devices are increasingly playing a major role in the consumption of online video. The research indicates that during the first quarter of this year, smartphones and tablets were responsible for 21 percent of all online video-plays worldwide, up from 9 percent in 2013 and a mere 3.4 percent two years ago. Considering that mobile and tablet video viewership is up 532 percent since 2012, the data should be of particular interest to broadcasters. Continue reading Attention Broadcasters: Mobile Video Viewing is on the Rise

Qplay Changes Direction, Brings its Video App to Chromecast

Earlier this year, we reported the launch of Qplay from TiVo co-founders Mike Ramsay and Jim Barton. The service allows users to create personalized video streams called “Qs” from various online sources. The startup also offers a $49 TV adapter for those who want to watch their video streams on their television. A new version of Qplay’s iPad app now adds the ability to cast videos to Google’s Chromecast streaming stick, which could eliminate the need for Qplay’s streaming player. Continue reading Qplay Changes Direction, Brings its Video App to Chromecast

Harris Poll: Popularity of Streaming Increases with TV Viewers

Although online streaming is not threatening to overtake traditional television viewing yet, it is gaining momentum. A recent Harris Poll found that 85 percent of Americans say they usually watch programs on a television via live feed, recorded or on demand. The number of Americans that most often stream shows is up three percent from 2012, at 23 percent. The poll also found that a quarter of Americans said they watch more streaming television now than they did a year ago. Continue reading Harris Poll: Popularity of Streaming Increases with TV Viewers

YouTube to Block Artists Who Don’t Sign Up for New Service

Content from indie artists could disappear from Google’s YouTube “in a matter of days.” As YouTube prepares to launch its ad-free streaming music service, it also plans to block videos from independent labels and artists that choose not to sign up for the new subscription offering. While YouTube has signed licensing deals with the major labels, it says it will block others from using its entire platform if they do not agree to terms of the upcoming premium service. Continue reading YouTube to Block Artists Who Don’t Sign Up for New Service

LiveSphere: 360-Degree Immersive Broadcast Video Platform

Journalist and ETCentric contributor Adrian Pennington forwarded us news that the LiveSphere 360-degree broadcast video application, which is presently under development in France and is at least a year from a commercial product, was tested during the recent Roland-Garros tennis tournament. LiveSphere is being developed by compression specialist ATEME in partnership with Kolor, maker of photo and video stitching software, and mobile interaction expert Finwe. Continue reading LiveSphere: 360-Degree Immersive Broadcast Video Platform

Amazon Releases App Figures in Preparation for Launch Event

Following several hardware launches over the past year, including new Kindle Fire tablets and its Fire TV streaming box, Amazon is expected to unveil its first smartphone during a launch event in Seattle on Wednesday. To generate buzz, the company posted a YouTube video about a mysterious new product and announced that the number of apps in its Appstore nearly tripled over the past year. More than 240,000 apps are now available, and Amazon claims developers can make more money with its apps. Continue reading Amazon Releases App Figures in Preparation for Launch Event

EU and South Korea Team Up for Faster Mobile Internet Access

South Korea and the European Union announced a new pact today to develop 5G networks for faster mobile Internet service. The two will launch a joint group with plans to develop systems, set standards and ready radio frequencies in order to help establish a global vision on 5G by the end of next year. According to EU data, the six minutes required to download a one-hour HD movie on a 4G mobile Internet would only take six seconds on a superfast 5G network. Continue reading EU and South Korea Team Up for Faster Mobile Internet Access

Comcast to Provide Streaming Service Through X1 Set-Top Box

Comcast will test a streaming service later this year in order to give audiences access to a wider variety of content through its X1 cable set-top boxes. The service will be similar to YouTube in that is will allow people to upload videos directly to a server. A dedicated app will then make the content available on a streaming basis along with mobile apps in 2015 or 2016. SVP of Video Matt Strauss explains that the focus will be on professionally-produced and serialized content. Continue reading Comcast to Provide Streaming Service Through X1 Set-Top Box

Amazon Launches Ad-Free, Streaming “Prime Music” Service

As expected, Amazon has launched Prime Music featuring more than one million songs and hundreds of playlists. The new service offers unlimited streaming without ads or restrictions. It is free to Amazon Prime members and could potentially help attract new subscribers (those who are interested can sign up for a free 30-day trial). Prime members can also listen to downloaded music offline on their Kindle Fire, HDX, iOS, Android and Mac/PC devices via Amazon’s Cloud Player. Continue reading Amazon Launches Ad-Free, Streaming “Prime Music” Service

Annual Internet Traffic to Grow More Than 20 Percent by 2018

Cisco’s latest Visual Networking Index forecasts an increase in annual Internet traffic of more than 20 percent by 2018, at which point global network traffic will exceed that of all previous Internet years combined. More users and devices, faster broadband speeds and an increase in video viewing is expected to expand global Internet Protocol traffic nearly three-fold over the next five years. Also, the Internet of Everything, M2M technologies and Ultra HD adoption will be key growth drivers. Continue reading Annual Internet Traffic to Grow More Than 20 Percent by 2018

E3 2014: $99 Game-Streamer PlayStation TV Coming to U.S.

During its E3 press conference yesterday in Los Angeles, Sony announced that the PlayStation TV device is coming to North America this fall for $99 as a standalone, or for $139 bundled with a DualShock Controller, an 8GB memory card for storing downloaded games, and a copy of “The Lego Movie” video game. Users can pair the set-top box with their PlayStation 4 console for remote play on a second television. Video and music streaming services will be accessible, as will games via PlayStation Now. Continue reading E3 2014: $99 Game-Streamer PlayStation TV Coming to U.S.

AT&T Could Offer its Customers DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket

With AT&T’s $49 billion planned acquisition of DirecTV, the phone company may offer NFL Sunday Ticket programming to its wireless customers. Sunday Ticket, a premium service that allows DirecTV customers to watch out-of-market NFL games, also allows users to stream to mobile devices at an extra cost. If AT&T is able to extend Sunday Ticket to its customers, it would further compete with Verizon, which already has streaming rights to Sunday, Monday and Thursday night football games. Continue reading AT&T Could Offer its Customers DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket

Half of U.S. Households Now Have an Internet-Connected TV

Leichtman Research Group notes that 47 percent of U.S. households currently subscribe to Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime or a combination of these services, while 49 percent have at least one Internet-connected TV (up from 24 percent four years ago). Interestingly, as paid streaming services become more accessible, consumers still prefer watching video for free. According to nScreenMedia, YouTube accounted for 48 percent of time people spent watching online video in March. Continue reading Half of U.S. Households Now Have an Internet-Connected TV

Streaming Delay Messages: Verizon Threatens to Sue Netflix

Last week it was reported that Netflix had begun posting on-screen messages blaming Verizon for congestion that was slowing video streams. While Netflix claims the message was simply one step in notifying customers about how an ISP can impact the viewing experience, Verizon described the move as “a PR stunt” and suggested the message “is not only inaccurate, it is deliberately misleading.” Later in the week, Verizon sent a cease and desist letter to Netflix. Continue reading Streaming Delay Messages: Verizon Threatens to Sue Netflix

PwC Study: Electronic Home Video to Top Physical by 2016

According to new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, box office and digital revenue is expected to steadily increase over the next five years, while rentals and sales of discs are projected to sharply decline. PwC predicts that electronic home video revenue will exceed revenue of physical home video by 2016. Not surprisingly, DVDs are facing a questionable future. PwC estimates that physical home entertainment revenue will decline from $12.2 billion in 2013 to $8.7 billion in 2018. Continue reading PwC Study: Electronic Home Video to Top Physical by 2016

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