AT&T Could Reach $50 Billion Deal for DirecTV in Two Weeks

AT&T is close to striking a $50 billion deal to acquire satellite TV provider DirecTV, according to people familiar with the matter. An agreement between the two companies involving a mix of cash and AT&T stock could be reached within two weeks. Insiders say the two sides are discussing a share price for DirecTV in the low to mid-nineties (at $95 a share, such a deal would value DirecTV at almost $48 billion). The deal comes as AT&T considers video distribution a potentially key initiative for its future. Continue reading AT&T Could Reach $50 Billion Deal for DirecTV in Two Weeks

Viewers Rarely Start a New TV Show Because of Social Media

According to a new study by the Council for Research Excellence, conversations on social media have less influence than traditional factors, such as TV commercials for new shows or laziness in changing channels, in prompting audiences to watch a new show. In addition, only 16.1 percent of survey respondents say they use social media while watching prime time television, and less than half those participants typically use social networks to discuss the show they are watching. Continue reading Viewers Rarely Start a New TV Show Because of Social Media

Pluto.tv Creates Curated Channels Based on Online Videos

As online videos continue to become more popular, many viewers are faced with the challenge of navigating a flood of content. Pluto.tv has created topic-based video channels in the hopes of addressing this problem, and aims to give viewers the feeling of watching a 30-minute packaged television show compiled of a dozen or more short video clips. There are about 100 channels featuring categories such as Comedy, Music, Sports, Tech, Education and Kids. Pluto.tv has designed its interface to mimic a standard TV guide. Continue reading Pluto.tv Creates Curated Channels Based on Online Videos

EXCLUSIVE: SMPTE Asks if 4K Will Be a Hit with Consumers

Industry leaders gathered at Loews Hollywood Hotel for the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers’ annual conference this week. Executives from Samsung, Sony, NPD DisplaySearch and HDMI Licensing discussed the progress and future of 4K television during the “4K/UHD TV – Will it be a hit with consumers?” panel. Topics included quality, pricing, content availability, upconversion, replacement cycles, lessons learned from 3D TV, and the need for consistent terminology. Continue reading EXCLUSIVE: SMPTE Asks if 4K Will Be a Hit with Consumers

SMPTE: Industry Executives Discuss the Future of Ultra HDTV

During a panel discussion at the SMPTE conference, execs from Sony, Samsung, HDMI Licensing and NPD DisplaySearch addressed the challenges ahead for what was described as an “exciting” time for “immersive” Ultra HDTV. The panel discussed topics including the current lack of available content and the need to shape a clear message for consumers. While the industry seems divided on a 4K transition, proponents at the conference suggested there would ultimately be consumer demand. Continue reading SMPTE: Industry Executives Discuss the Future of Ultra HDTV