Netflix Plans to Add Original Series, Expand to 200 Countries

Following news of record quarterly earnings, Netflix told Wall Street investors that it plans to expand its video service to 200 countries in the next two years. Netflix added 2.43 million international subscribers in the fourth quarter of 2014 after expanding to 50 countries and its stock jumped more than 20 percent. As part of its ambitious expansion plans, Netflix also wants to start producing 20 original scripted series per year, which could help the company become more successful in international markets. Continue reading Netflix Plans to Add Original Series, Expand to 200 Countries

Following its Record Quarter, Netflix Eyes Global Expansion

Yesterday’s fourth-quarter earnings report indicates that Netflix added 13 million subscribers in 2014, including 4.3 million during the final three months (marking the company’s strongest quarter of subscriber gains to date). Netflix earnings also grew to a quarterly high of $83.4 million. “Internet TV is growing globally and Netflix is leading the charge,” claims CEO Reed Hastings. Netflix continues to invest heavily in original content and expand internationally as part of its effort to fend off growing competition from Amazon, HBO and YouTube. Continue reading Following its Record Quarter, Netflix Eyes Global Expansion

Netflix is Hoping to Take its Original Series Success Abroad

Streaming video service Netflix saw U.S. viewership of its original series jump from 57 percent of domestic subscribers in the first quarter to 72 percent in the third quarter. New shows and word-of-mouth likely helped spark interest in Netflix originals like “Orange Is the New Black.” Now, amid growing competition, Netflix hopes to replicate that success overseas with its upcoming high-budget original series, “Marco Polo,” which is set to make its international debut in December. Continue reading Netflix is Hoping to Take its Original Series Success Abroad

Akamai: Global Broadband Speeds Reach 4Mbps for First Time

In its quarterly State of the Internet report, Akamai notes that we have now passed average worldwide connection speeds of 4 megabits per second, as Internet speeds continue to be impacted by the growth of cellular networks and affordable smartphones and tablets. While this number may not seem like big news in the U.S., it is a significant milestone in many other parts of the world. The report also indicates that distributed denial of service attacks are down by 15 percent compared to the previous year. Continue reading Akamai: Global Broadband Speeds Reach 4Mbps for First Time

Fox’s ‘Gotham’ Pilot is Most Pirated New TV Show this Fall

The premiere of Fox’s “Gotham” was illegally downloaded 1.33 million times over the course of 13 days. That is more than five times the number of downloads of any other new TV series in the U.S. More than 177,000 of those downloads took place in the U.S., even though the show was available for free online streaming the next day. Viewers in Australia, the U.K., Brazil, and Canada also heavily pirated the show, indicating the Batman-based series has worldwide appeal. Continue reading Fox’s ‘Gotham’ Pilot is Most Pirated New TV Show this Fall

YouTube Feature Enables Fans to Donate to Content Creators

In order for online video producers to make money, YouTube offers a feature that allows viewers to donate to their favorite artists. Independent content creators are the major source of revenue for YouTube, and while some of them do make money through pre-roll ads, it is not enough for many. Now, Google offers Fan Funding so viewers can essentially tip their favorite video creators. The feature works in both the browser and the Android app, and all transactions are processed by Google Wallet. Continue reading YouTube Feature Enables Fans to Donate to Content Creators

Piracy: Google Faces One Million Removal Requests Per Day

In a new first, Google claims that it now processes an average of one million pirate link removal requests per day. Copyright holders are reporting more infringing search results and overloading Google with DMCA takedown notices in an effort to combat growing piracy. During the second quarter of this year, “Game of Thrones” episodes were downloaded from P2P networks worldwide nearly 299 million times. Australia, Brazil and the U.S. lead in the number of shows downloaded. Continue reading Piracy: Google Faces One Million Removal Requests Per Day

YouTube Takes Cue from Netflix, Blames ISPs for Slow Video

YouTube recently started pointing at Internet service providers when it comes to problems with video playback. When a YouTube video experiences buffer or playback issues, a message that reads “Experiencing interruptions?” now appears under the video. Clicking “Find out why” takes users to a new Google page that lists video playback quality for ISPs of different countries. Last month, Netflix posted alerts blaming a crowded Verizon network when customers experienced grainy video. Continue reading YouTube Takes Cue from Netflix, Blames ISPs for Slow Video

SMPTE Tech Summit at NAB: The Trials of Global Distribution

The first day of SMPTE’s Technology Summit On Cinema at NAB featured a session called “From Camera to Consumer — the New Post Production.” Digital Studio GM for Walt Disney Studios, Leon Silverman, gave a funny and animated presentation during the session about the many versions of a movie that Disney must produce for international audiences. In the case of the animated feature “Planes,” not only did Disney create dozens of native language dubs and subtitled versions, but it also changed details in the animation to please the local audience. Continue reading SMPTE Tech Summit at NAB: The Trials of Global Distribution

Social TV: Twitter Purchases Two Analytics Firms in Europe

Twitter has acquired two TV analytics companies as part of its effort to become a stronger social complement to television viewing. French company Mesagraph and U.K.-based SecondSync will become part of Twitter’s London office. Twitter also announced it will be expanding its partnership with Kantar Media, and is hoping to extend its Twitter TV ratings system into Europe. To compete in the social TV space, Facebook has teamed with TV networks to initiate live updates during broadcasts, a practice popular with Twitter. Continue reading Social TV: Twitter Purchases Two Analytics Firms in Europe

Despite Piracy, Global Cinema Experiences Revenue Growth

A new report released by the Motion Picture Association of America during CinemaCon this week in Las Vegas points to good news as movie industry revenues around the globe increased four percent from 2012 to 2013. While revenue from U.S. and Canada box offices were only up one percent, the global increases suggest that the movie industry has been able to survive during the ongoing threat of online piracy. Revenue in China also increased, the country that sits on top of the piracy list. Continue reading Despite Piracy, Global Cinema Experiences Revenue Growth

New Milestone: Kickstarter Passes the $1 Billion Pledge Mark

According to Kickstarter, the crowd-funding site officially passed $1 billion in pledges yesterday. Of the one billion pledged by 5.7 million individuals from 224 countries and territories to help fund creative projects, more than half was pledged in the last 12 months. More than $663 million was pledged by nearly 3.76 million backers in the U.S. alone. Other top countries include the U.K., Canada, Australia, Germany and France. Interestingly, nearly 16,000 people have backed more than 50 projects. Continue reading New Milestone: Kickstarter Passes the $1 Billion Pledge Mark

Carnegie Mellon Computer Can Teach Itself Common Sense

The Never Ending Image Learner (NEIL), a computer program at Carnegie Mellon, searches the Web for images and tries to understand them in order to grow a visual database and gather common sense. This program is part of recent advances in computer vision where computer programs are able to identify and label objects in images, as well as recognize attributes such as color and lighting. This data will help computers comprehend the visual world. Continue reading Carnegie Mellon Computer Can Teach Itself Common Sense

LTE Networks in Asia Could Set the Stage for U.S. and Europe

Carrier aggregation allows for splicing and rearranging of the electromagnetic spectrum to create a super-charged network connection. A number of companies are experimenting with the technology, while networks in Asia are already touting faster speeds and breakthroughs in 4G. In June, SK Telecom announced its LTE-Advanced service with speeds two times faster than that of LTE, and 10 times faster than 3G. South Korea’s LG U+ followed in July, leaving Europe and North America to play catch up. Continue reading LTE Networks in Asia Could Set the Stage for U.S. and Europe

Record Ratings and Illegal Download Spike for ‘Breaking Bad’

The final season of AMC’s “Breaking Bad” debuted with its best ever rating of 5.9 million viewers. Part of the high ratings can be attributed to Netflix, where subscribers can watch all previous episodes of the series, providing new viewers with a way to catch up prior to the new season. Along with the high ratings, there was a spike in illegal downloads of “Breaking Bad” episodes. This occurred despite the show being made available within hours across global regions. Continue reading Record Ratings and Illegal Download Spike for ‘Breaking Bad’

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