HBO to Take On Netflix with New Streaming Service in 2015

HBO announced yesterday that it plans to launch a standalone Internet streaming service in the U.S. next year that would not require a traditional TV subscription. The move is part of the cable network’s strategy to reach out to cord cutters, and underscores its growing rivalry with Netflix. The two companies are battling for a new generation of viewers who prefer watching their TV shows and movies via Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, and YouTube rather than subscribing to cable or satellite television. Continue reading HBO to Take On Netflix with New Streaming Service in 2015

Cord-Shaving Becoming New Concern for the Pay TV Industry

The number of cable channel subscribers has decreased over the past four years, but it is not necessarily a result of viewers completely “cutting the cord.” Rather, many viewers are now “cord shaving,” or opting for smaller, cheaper cable bundles. These bundles do not include popular channels like CNN, ESPN or TNT. Those channels, and the others in the top 40 most distributed channels have lost more than 3 percent of their distribution, 3.2 million subscribers, in the past four years. Continue reading Cord-Shaving Becoming New Concern for the Pay TV Industry

Simple.tv DVR Streams Live and Recorded TV to Mobile Devices

For over-the-air recording, Simple.tv offers plenty of perks for cord cutters. The set-top box will not only stream video content to desktops and mobile devices, but also other set-top streamers such as Apple TV, Chromecast and Roku. The device can run up to five streams at once and recorded TV shows can be downloaded for offline viewing. However, Simple.tv comes at a steep price: $200 for the box, $60 to $150 for the subscription, and at least $50 for the hard drive. Continue reading Simple.tv DVR Streams Live and Recorded TV to Mobile Devices

New AT&T Internet and Cable Plan Includes Free Amazon Prime

AT&T is introducing a new Internet TV bundle that offers U-verse high speed Internet, U-verse TV, HBO, and a year-long subscription to Amazon Prime. The bundle is priced at an introductory rate of $39 per month. This move is part of AT&T’s strategy to lure cord-cutters who unbundle their expensive cable packages to opt for more online steaming options. AT&T’s partnership with Amazon Prime also shows the company’s interest in expanding its content offerings. Continue reading New AT&T Internet and Cable Plan Includes Free Amazon Prime

Vidmind Debuts Next-Gen STB, TiVo Readies New 24TB DVR

Israel-based Vidmind plans to unveil the second generation of its Android set-top box this week at IBC in Amsterdam. The company hopes to attract cord cutters with an offering that combines over-the-air broadcast TV with live streaming and on-demand content. Meanwhile, TiVo has announced its 24TB TiVo Mega, slated for launch early next year. For $5,000 you can record six shows at once and store up to 4,000 hours of HD programming (or 26,000 hours of SD content). It also includes free TiVo service for life. Continue reading Vidmind Debuts Next-Gen STB, TiVo Readies New 24TB DVR

Simple.tv Users Can Now Share Recorded Content with Friends

Connected DVR maker Simple.tv now provides users with the ability to offer friends and family members access to their recorded television shows and movies. Simple.tv’s DVR for cord cutters now enables guest passes so that others can access DVR recordings over the Internet via Simple.tv’s Web interface, the company’s mobile apps, as well as its Roku app. Guests are restricted to streaming content already recorded; they cannot tune into live TV or schedule additional recordings. Continue reading Simple.tv Users Can Now Share Recorded Content with Friends

ABC Video App Provides 24-Hour News for Apple TV Users

The ABC News video app, which launched yesterday on Apple TV, gives viewers access to 24-hour news coverage, from ABC News TV show segments to live video feeds from the International Space Station. This is the first time that ABC has offered 24-hour news because the news outlet does not have its own news-only channel. Apple TV users can browse video by topic or show, and the ABC News app even features content from local ABC-owned stations. Continue reading ABC Video App Provides 24-Hour News for Apple TV Users

Dish Targets Cord Cutters with Upcoming Internet TV Service

With its planned Internet-based TV service, Dish is targeting consumers who are frustrated by traditional pay TV. Speaking at the TV of Tomorrow Show in San Francisco yesterday, Dish exec Adam Lowy said that “cord cutters, cord nevers and what we call cord haters” are on the company’s radar. The service plans to initially launch on Dish’s existing infrastructure, but will later move to an all-IP system. Dish is currently talking to television networks about licensing content for the new service. Continue reading Dish Targets Cord Cutters with Upcoming Internet TV Service

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

Cable Companies Move Toward Cloud-Based Set-Top Boxes

For the first time in more than six years, Comcast gained more video subscribers than it lost last quarter. The cable provider can attribute that growth to its new set-top boxes, which feature a searchable, cloud-based interface resembling that of a Roku, Apple TV or Google Chromecast. Time Warner Cable, which saw a decline in last quarter’s numbers, plans to release its own set-top box in hopes of boosting its subscribers and preventing cable cutting by customers. Continue reading Cable Companies Move Toward Cloud-Based Set-Top Boxes

Some Companies Moving Toward Offering Internet TV Services

A number of companies are making moves toward launching Internet TV services that would be available on any mobile device and allow for easier navigation and recording in the cloud, among other features. Sony claims to be close to testing a cloud-based TV service, while Verizon has purchased an Internet TV service developed by Intel. Meanwhile, Amazon is said to be working on a set-top box for delivering streaming video, and Apple is approaching content companies to pitch its own solution. Continue reading Some Companies Moving Toward Offering Internet TV Services

Time Warner Cable Offers $29.99 Bundle: HBO and 20 Channels

Time Warner Cable is marketing a stripped-down, low-cost bundle ($29.99 per month) that includes HBO and a limited number of broadcast TV channels. The new package is targeting viewers who are not interested in paying for a traditional tier of cable channels. The “Starter TV with HBO” package features about 20 channels including local broadcast networks. The special pricing is available for the first 12 months, but does not include set-top box fees or other charges. Continue reading Time Warner Cable Offers $29.99 Bundle: HBO and 20 Channels

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