Netflix in Talks with Cable Companies to Combine Services

Netflix is in talks with several pay TV providers, including Comcast and Suddenlink Communications, to offer its online video service as an app on pay TV set-top boxes, according to those familiar with the talks. Netflix and cable operators are competitors, but both may be open to the possible benefits in combining their services. However, some cable operators have concerns regarding Netflix technology on their network and where that may lead.

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Comcast Deal Could Turn Twitter into TV-Watching Service

Comcast and Twitter announced a deal yesterday that will allow Comcast customers to access TV programs from Twitter messages related to specific shows. The two companies hope that the “See It” feature will eventually become an industrywide practice. While the feature will initially only be available for Twitter posts published by Comcast-owned channels, the companies are talking with distributors and channel owners about extending it to additional content. Continue reading Comcast Deal Could Turn Twitter into TV-Watching Service

Intel Looking for Backers to Help Keep Pay TV Service Alive

Intel executives have spoken with Amazon and Samsung in search of a strategic partner willing to back its Web-based pay TV service that it hopes to launch by the end of 2013. If Intel cannot find a backer to help fund and distribute the service, it is possible that the plan will be dissolved. Earlier in the year, Intel executive Erik Huggers disclosed that the company plans to sell an OTT pay service that includes a wide array of broadcast and cable TV networks. Continue reading Intel Looking for Backers to Help Keep Pay TV Service Alive

Cable Operators Expand On-Demand to Compete With Netflix

Pay TV operators such as Comcast and Verizon FiOS are expanding their on-demand TV services. This is in response to Netflix, through which many users “binge” on a full season of programming in one viewing. Cable operators and media content companies differ on where they should distribute their on-demand content and are cautiously moving forward. A concern for many is the pricing structure if cable companies offer expanded on-demand services. Continue reading Cable Operators Expand On-Demand to Compete With Netflix

Fresh Off the Auction Block, Hulu Investing in New Content

Hulu is making significant investments in content, including a licensing deal with BBC Worldwide North America to bring 144 titles to its video-streaming service. The company is also adding the first four seasons of CBS series “The Good Wife” to its library, and ordered 10 episodes of supernatural comedy “Deadbeat” from Lionsgate, one of approximately 40 original series it plans to introduce in the upcoming years. Hulu was taken off the auction block just two months ago. Continue reading Fresh Off the Auction Block, Hulu Investing in New Content

Broadcasters Turn to Additional Screens to Launch New Shows

With fall TV premieres just around the corner, networks including ABC, NBC and Fox are offering pilots and new content through outlets such as Hulu, iTunes, Amazon and cable and satellite provided VOD, often prior to the scheduled television broadcasts. Hulu, for example, is already offering episodes of “The Mindy Project,” “Ironside,” “The Goldbergs,” “Trophy Wife” and “Welcome to the Family.” Some shows will also be available on network websites and those of affiliated stations. Continue reading Broadcasters Turn to Additional Screens to Launch New Shows

YouTube Stars Are Attracting Traditional Media Companies

Previously, people had to establish their own fame on YouTube, but now there are companies and networks that can help. At the recent VidCon conference in Anaheim, there was much debate regarding independent networks and media companies, and the future of online video among video creators and the industry. Traditional media companies and independents are attempting to establish themselves as a presence in online video and among emerging YouTube stars. Continue reading YouTube Stars Are Attracting Traditional Media Companies

Tech and Pay TV Companies Are Changing How We Watch TV

Intel is one of many companies currently developing home entertainment technologies that could significantly change how viewers interact with TV. Tech companies are integrating advanced features and controls in TV connected devices, from voice activation, DVR and cloud storage sync. Other companies such as cable providers and manufacturers are also introducing advanced TV technologies as well. However, obstacles will come from content licensing. Continue reading Tech and Pay TV Companies Are Changing How We Watch TV

Hulu Bidding Concludes, Reportedly Down to Three Suitors

The bidding process for Hulu concluded on Friday and the Los Angeles-based streaming media company has reportedly narrowed down the list of suitors to DirecTV, The Chernin Group and Guggenheim Digital Media. Previous offers had reached at least $1 billion, people familiar with the dealings said in May. Some reports suggest that DirecTV may be the likely frontrunner, since the satellite TV provider could have the most to gain. Continue reading Hulu Bidding Concludes, Reportedly Down to Three Suitors

NCTA Cable Show: Comcast Unveils X2 Cloud-Based Platform

During the NCTA Cable Show this week in Washington D.C., Comcast CEO Brian Roberts unveiled the X2 cloud-based entertainment platform that will enable Xfinity TV subscribers to access live and on-demand television programming, online video, personalized recommendations and apps across platforms including computers, smartphones, tablets and TVs. The company has also upgraded its current X1 platform with a new “Send to TV” feature that allows users to send Web content to their set-top box. Continue reading NCTA Cable Show: Comcast Unveils X2 Cloud-Based Platform

Cable Show: Comcast to Create Crowdsourced Hotspot Network

At the National Cable and Telecommunications Association conference yesterday in Washington D.C., Comcast announced that it has begun shipping a new wireless gateway to its residential broadband customers that will serve as both a private Wi-Fi router and a public hotspot. The bold (and possibly controversial) move will enable Comcast to essentially crowdsource its Wi-Fi network, turning home gateways into public hotspots. Continue reading Cable Show: Comcast to Create Crowdsourced Hotspot Network

D11 Conference: Fanhattan Unveils All-in-One Set-Top Box

Video discovery startup Fanhattan unveiled Fan TV yesterday at the D: All Things Digital conference in California. The OTT set-top box will enable access to live TV and VOD, in addition to a cloud-based DVR and streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu. Viewers will be able to search and discover TV shows and movies based on genre, actors, social recommendations, etc. Fanhattan plans to partner with pay TV companies to sell the box, which is expected to be available later this year. Continue reading D11 Conference: Fanhattan Unveils All-in-One Set-Top Box

Court Rules Comcast Does Not Have to Carry Tennis Channel

According to a federal appeals court ruling, cable provider Comcast is under no legal obligation to offer the independently-owned Tennis Channel as widely as its own sports networks, which could be disappointing news for smaller cable channels in search of viewers. The three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia stated the Tennis Channel failed to prove that Comcast did not have business reasons for pushing the channel to a lesser tier. Continue reading Court Rules Comcast Does Not Have to Carry Tennis Channel

Pay TV Operators Time Warner Cable and DirecTV Eye Hulu

The number of potential bidders for Hulu grew late last week when it was reported that Time Warner Cable and DirecTV are both interested in the six-year-old online video site. Other firms that have expressed interest in Hulu include Guggenheim Partners, Yahoo and Peter Chernin’s investment group. The video site — jointly owned by Comcast, Disney and News Corp. — has reportedly been considering a range of strategic options, including a sale. Continue reading Pay TV Operators Time Warner Cable and DirecTV Eye Hulu

Time-Shifting: Video-On-Demand Continues to Gain Traction

As new TV Everywhere initiatives and looming Hulu bids continue to draw media attention, video-on-demand is quietly gaining traction. Despite what The New York Times describes as “past missteps by cable and satellite providers,” an increasing number of TV episodes and movies are becoming available through VOD systems and viewers are taking note. Some cable providers and TV networks recognize a viable future for the time-shifting technology. Continue reading Time-Shifting: Video-On-Demand Continues to Gain Traction

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