Tech Firms Sign a Cybersecurity Pledge to Protect Customers

Led by tech titans Facebook and Microsoft, more than 30 tech companies have signed a Cybersecurity Tech Accord as part of their efforts to protect customers from cyberattacks and “the misuse of their technology.” According to the agreement, tech companies pledge not to assist governments that initiate attacks against “innocent civilians and enterprises.” Among the signatories are companies that power Internet technology and information infrastructure, including Cisco, Cloudflare, Dell, HP, LinkedIn, Nielsen, Nokia, Oracle, Symantec and VMware. Continue reading Tech Firms Sign a Cybersecurity Pledge to Protect Customers

AWS Rolls Out Elemental Media Services for Video Providers

Amazon Web Services debuted AWS Elemental Media Services this week at the AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas. The suite includes five services, three based on existing AWS Elemental products and two new services. Announced by AWS chief marketing officer Keith Wymbs, the existing three products include live compression engine MediaLive, packaging technology MediaPackage and file-to-file transcoding engine MediaConvert. The two new services are MediaStore, for video delivery from storage optimized for media, and MediaTailor, a targeted ad insertion program. Continue reading AWS Rolls Out Elemental Media Services for Video Providers

EU Telcos Join Forces for 5G Networks, Weaker Net Neutrality

BT, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson, Hutchison, Nokia, Orange, Telefonica, Telenor and Vodafone are part of a group of 20 telcos that released a “5G Manifesto,” detailing what governments need to do to ensure 5G coverage across Europe. The companies say they will begin conducting large-scale tests of 5G by 2018, with a 2020 commercial launch in at least one city in each EU country. But the telcos also warn that net neutrality stands in the way of innovation and ask governments to lessen strictures enforcing it. Continue reading EU Telcos Join Forces for 5G Networks, Weaker Net Neutrality

What Twitter’s NFL Deal Means For Live Sports on TV, Online

Twitter’s acquisition of the rights for “Thursday Night Football” shows that a social media platform can compete with traditional broadcasters for the highest value of all TV rights deals. Although it’s not clear whether the deal indicates that more non-traditional deals are in the offing, one thing is certain: because sports organizations want viewers to be able access their events on any device at any time, they lead other content owners in figuring out what the new viewing ecosystem might look like. Continue reading What Twitter’s NFL Deal Means For Live Sports on TV, Online

CES: Emerging Opportunities and Equally Growing Risk of IoT

The Internet of Things will grow larger once again at CES 2016 with both incremental and innovative advances in objects, systems and simplicity, but for the entertainment industry the past year should also serve as a cautionary tale. Smart home sensors that track and analyze movements to enable new levels of seamless interaction will impact both the home and the world at large. Security will likely become an increasing concern as the infrastructure is created to effectively connect devices and systems. Continue reading CES: Emerging Opportunities and Equally Growing Risk of IoT

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

ITU Approves G.fast Standard, Should Benefit UHD Streaming

The International Telecommunication Union announced its approval of a new DSL standard that combines fiber and copper to transmit at gigabit speeds. The Broadband Forum industry consortium is testing interoperability of products and has scheduled a trial certification program. Following certification of chipsets and equipment, G.fast implementations are expected to hit the market next year. The standard is seen as a new way to deliver bandwidth intensive applications such as Ultra HD television. Continue reading ITU Approves G.fast Standard, Should Benefit UHD Streaming

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

BBC Schedules 4K Ultra HD Broadcast Trials for World Cup

Journalist and ETCentric contributor Adrian Pennington forwarded us news that the BBC, working with research partners Arqiva and BT, plans to broadcast the World Cup final and two other FIFA matches live in 4K as part of an ongoing trial with the Ultra HD format. This marks the first time that 4K will be distributed simultaneously over IP and digital terrestrial television technologies, a hybrid distribution model that the BBC has been developing for several years. Continue reading BBC Schedules 4K Ultra HD Broadcast Trials for World Cup

IBC 2013: Ultra HD Planned for World Cup and Tokyo Olympics

At the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam on Friday, FIFA and Sony announced that next year’s World Cup Final in Brazil will be produced in 4K. Sony also revealed it is developing production equipment to support 8K technology, and that 8K broadcasts are being planned for coverage of the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020. Sony hopes the announcements will help spark interest in Ultra HD, including the ultra sharp 8K, which is 16 times the resolution of current HD offerings. Continue reading IBC 2013: Ultra HD Planned for World Cup and Tokyo Olympics

Hollywood Victory: Judge Orders BT to Block Newzbin2 Filesharing Site

  • A British judge has ordered BT, the United Kingdom’s largest ISP, to block access to Newzbin2, a website that makes Hollywood content available to its users illegally. The order also made a provision for blocking access even if Newzbin2 moved to another IP address or URL.
  • “The judge backed the argument brought by a coalition of Hollywood studios, including Warner Bros, Paramount, Disney, Universal, Fox and Columbia, which have argued that Newzbin2 has made millions profiting from exploiting other people’s work,” reports The Guardian.
  • This order may set a precedent for blocking of other illegal filesharing websites in the UK.
  • “Securing the intervention of the ISPs was the only way to put the commercial pirates out of reach for the majority of consumers,” said Chris Marcich, president and managing director of MPA Europe. “This move means that we can invest more in our own digital offerings, delivering higher quality and more variety of products to the consumer.”

UK Consortium Plans to Conduct White Space Radio Trial

  • A consortium in the United Kingdom that includes Microsoft, BT and the BBC will test a white space radio service in Cambridge to determine effectiveness and any possible interference with TV transmission.
  • White space radio has been proposed to complete the UK’s broadband coverage.
  • Data rates range from 10kbps to 16Mbps depending on distance from the base station.
  • UK could be covered with 6,000 base stations on existing cell towers and provide low bandwidth services.