Facebook Now Offers Live Video to Group of U.S. iPhone Users

Facebook is introducing its tool for sharing live video to a small group of U.S. iPhone users, four months after it was initially debuted by several celebrities and public figures. It differs from its closest competitors, Meerkat and Twitter’s Periscope and Meerkat, in that the videos are only available to a small group of approved viewers, and replay videos are automatically saved and permanently visible. Facebook positions its video feed as ideal for personal and family events, rather than the breaking news featured on other sites. Continue reading Facebook Now Offers Live Video to Group of U.S. iPhone Users

DirecTV Planning to Debut Live 4K Broadcasting in Early 2016

DirecTV has joined the ranks of those looking to bring more 4K content to consumers. During New York’s TranSPORT conference, DirecTV’s Phil Goswitz confirmed that the company plans to launch a live 4K broadcast service sometime early next year. He said live sports transmissions are currently being tested and DirecTV has the ability to transmit up to 50 new UHD channels. Goswitz explained that DirecTV is “moving into working with partners” for more 4K content. CBS, ESPN and Fox are among the networks that have also been experimenting with live 4K production. Continue reading DirecTV Planning to Debut Live 4K Broadcasting in Early 2016

FTC Studies Privacy Issues Inherent in Cross-Device Tracking

Prompted by the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), the Federal Trade Commission has scheduled a workshop to discuss cross-device tracking technologies. Using ultrasonic, inaudible pitches, the technology allows a user’s online behavior to be tracked across phones, TVs, tablets and computers. The pitches can be — and are already — embedded in TV commercials, ads in a computer browser and apps. The consumer is not made aware that the tracking technology has been activated and there is no way to opt out. Continue reading FTC Studies Privacy Issues Inherent in Cross-Device Tracking

SMPTE 2015: Experts Greenlight IP Technology for Broadcast

Television production facilities began incorporating IP, or Internet Protocol, technology several years ago, and an increasing number of broadcast equipment manufacturers are supporting the video/audio signal transport format. But is IP networking mature and robust enough for broadcasters to consider replacing their now-standard SDI networks with “all IP” versions? Broadcasters and broadcast equipment manufacturers have been busy trying to answer that question, and some of their results were presented at SMPTE 2015. Continue reading SMPTE 2015: Experts Greenlight IP Technology for Broadcast

Twitter and Facebook Widen Streaming Video Gap with Meerkat

Real-time streaming video has been the focus of several companies in recent months, and now bigger players Twitter and Facebook seem to be decisively pulling ahead of independent player Meerkat. Or not, says Meerkat founder Ben Rubin, who disputes the measurement criteria. What we do know is that Twitter’s live video app Periscope now boasts 10 million total accounts, while Meerkat, in May, reported two million accounts. Live video is still, however, a very small percentage of all consumer video on the Internet. Continue reading Twitter and Facebook Widen Streaming Video Gap with Meerkat

Facebook Live Broadcasting to Open Soon for Verified Profiles

Facebook is about to become a bigger competitor to Twitter-owned Periscope as it begins to offer wider access to the VIP-only Facebook app Mentions and Facebook Live. Up until now, Facebook Live — which allows a broadcaster to start a live video stream immediately, which users can watch in real-time and comment on — has only been available to a handful of high-profile individuals. Previously, Facebook has been circumspect when asked about when more people would have access to Live, which launched on August 4. Continue reading Facebook Live Broadcasting to Open Soon for Verified Profiles

BT Sport Ultra HD, Europe’s First 4K Channel, Broadcasts Live

On August 8, BT aired a live broadcast of a Premier League match on its newly launched BT Sport Ultra HD channel, the first such channel in Europe. The broadcast, which featured Manchester United versus Tottenham Hotspur, is the first of a series of live weekly broadcasts; future live broadcasts include UEFA Champions League, Aviva Premiership Rugby and MotoGP. BT’s TV Entertainment Ultra HD package, which costs subscribers about $23 a month, relies on a 4K-capable TV and BT’s 4K-capable 1TB Ultra HD YouView+ set-top box. Continue reading BT Sport Ultra HD, Europe’s First 4K Channel, Broadcasts Live

CBS to Live-Stream Super Bowl Ads, Link Online/TV Ratings

In a first, CBS will live-stream all the Super Bowl ads for its February 7, 2016 broadcast of Super Bowl 50. Super Bowl sponsors will also see online hits and TV ratings coupled, which, up until now, have been separated between Nielsen ratings for TV and other means for online. CBS is also seeking a hike in the cost of placing an ad in the Super Bowl, from at least $4.5 million to $4.7 million for a 30-second spot. This represents another record price since last year when NBC asked between $4.4 million and $4.5 million. Continue reading CBS to Live-Stream Super Bowl Ads, Link Online/TV Ratings

Nokia Introduces 360-Degree VR Camera for Pro Filmmakers

Nokia Technologies launched a 360-degree 3D VR camera targeted at professional content creators, and, in the process, rebranded itself. The company sold its mobile phone business to Microsoft in 2013. The new VR camera, dubbed OZO, which was unveiled in Hollywood and is slated for a Fall 2015 release, features eight lenses, each of which captures 2Kx2K resolution, and eight microphones to capture and create spatial audio. Nokia also plans to enable live broadcasting to VR headsets. Continue reading Nokia Introduces 360-Degree VR Camera for Pro Filmmakers

Periscope Releases Several New Features in iOS App Update

Twitter’s live video streamer Periscope updated its iOS app this week to include a new mute feature that prevents users from being interrupted by new broadcast notifications. Version 1.1.3 also brings a refreshed global feed for discovering streams around the world, the ability to access your broadcast stats from previous streams (not just at the conclusion of a broadcast), the option of language preferences in profile settings, and Handoff support that allows users to initiate viewing on one device and pick up the same stream on another device. Continue reading Periscope Releases Several New Features in iOS App Update

Twitter Believes the Time is Now Right for Live Streaming Apps

Despite the failure of several live streaming apps in recent years, Twitter and other investors are betting that consumers are now ready to live stream their experiences. Twitter recently acquired live streaming app Periscope for $100 million and now Twitter users can broadcast live from the social network. Meerkat, Camio, YouNow, Justin.tv, and Livestream offer similar services. With more access to streaming, people may be more inclined to share video of themselves through this model. Continue reading Twitter Believes the Time is Now Right for Live Streaming Apps

Ustream Offers SDK for Those Interested in Live Broadcasting

Following the positive response to the Meerkat app that enables users to temporarily broadcast live video via social media, and the restrictions placed on it by Twitter (which is likely readying its own similar service with the acquisition of Periscope), live-streaming startup Ustream announced that it is opening its internal API to anyone interested in building their own broadcasting app. This could potentially lead to alternatives for individuals and companies looking to broadcast video without the need for embedded media players. Continue reading Ustream Offers SDK for Those Interested in Live Broadcasting

Meerkat App on Twitter: Disappearing Videos a New Sensation

Disappointed with the direction of his video startup Yevvo, Ben Rubin replaced it with a simplified iOS app for sharing live video via Twitter. Launched in February, Meerkat grabbed 28,000 users in its first week. In less than two weeks, that number had surpassed 100,000. Now the app is being used for everything from office tours and church services to skateboard videos and live event coverage. Meerkat, which reportedly took Rubin a mere eight weeks to build, has become a social sensation and the latest in the push for ephemeral apps. Continue reading Meerkat App on Twitter: Disappearing Videos a New Sensation

YouTube WatchMe Project Brings Live Broadcasting to Apps

YouTube has unveiled the “YouTube WatchMe for Android” project, which provides app developers with the ability to integrate live streaming into their Android apps. The open source project is available on GitHub, but so far, the project only offers a reference app where a user simply presses a button in the app to start and stop broadcasting. Eventually, YouTube plans to develop a toolkit that will help developers include a broadcasting capability for their own apps. Continue reading YouTube WatchMe Project Brings Live Broadcasting to Apps

Free ‘League of Legends’ Game May Make $1 Billion This Year

The world championship for the biggest e-sport in the world, “League of Legends,” starts in South Korea this weekend. About 40,000 fans are expected to fill the stadium to watch the tournament live while at least another 30 million will watch the games online. Riot Games runs the League of Legends World Championship along with the online broadcasting, and by producing a premium sporting experience for players, Riot Games may make upwards of $1 billion in 2014. Continue reading Free ‘League of Legends’ Game May Make $1 Billion This Year

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