Amazon Announces Six New Shows After Another Pilot Season

Amazon.com announced yesterday that it has picked up two dramas, two comedies and two kids shows from the batch of 10 television pilots it was testing with viewers. Amazon considered feedback and ratings submitted by users, as it did with an earlier pilot season. However, this time twice as many viewers (more than two million) were involved with the process. While Amazon’s streaming service normally does not include ads, the pilots were sponsored by Geico so they could be available to all users, not just Prime subscribers. Continue reading Amazon Announces Six New Shows After Another Pilot Season

Execs Discuss Era of Advanced Broadcasting at HPA Retreat

How to advance broadcasting to its next iteration was the topic of two sessions at the HPA Tech Retreat this week, one a panel moderated by Ericsson SVP TV Technology Matthew Goldman, and including representatives from Fox, Sinclair Broadcast Group, CBS, CBC, PBS and Cox Media Group, and, second, a discussion led by former Fox Engineering President Andy Setos, with broadcast executive Jim DeFilippis joining via Internet from the Sochi Olympics. Continue reading Execs Discuss Era of Advanced Broadcasting at HPA Retreat

HPA Retreat: Stadium of the Future? There’s an App for That

Attendees at the Hollywood Post Alliance Tech Retreat in Indian Wells were treated on Wednesday to an in-depth technical description of the most connected sports stadium in the world. James Stellpflug, VP of sports products at media company EVS Broadcast Equipment explained the inner workings of the latest systems currently running at Sporting Park, the home of Major League Soccer team Sporting Kansas City. Last summer we reported that Sporting Park is becoming a model for stadium technology and fan engagement. Continue reading HPA Retreat: Stadium of the Future? There’s an App for That

Super Bowl Sets Records for Game, Halftime Show, Social Media

According to Nielsen estimates, Sunday’s broadcast of Super Bowl XLVIII on Fox drew 111.5 million viewers, making it the most-watched television broadcast in U.S. history. The overall ratings may have even gone higher had the game not been such a blowout. Last year’s Super Bowl on CBS averaged 108.69 million viewers. Sunday’s viewership totaled 112.6 million, when including those who watched on digital platforms Fox Sports GO and FoxSports.com, and fans who opted for the Spanish-language feed on Fox Deportes. Continue reading Super Bowl Sets Records for Game, Halftime Show, Social Media

ShopTV App: Beckham Bodywear to Sell During Super Bowl Spot

TV commerce firm Delivery Agent will team with H&M to boost sales via the retailer’s upcoming Super Bowl commercial. H&M’s 30-second spot will feature the spring collection of David Beckham Bodywear. Delivery Agent’s tech will allow viewers to purchase products in the commercial through a special app. However, only a fraction of viewers will actually be able to use it, since the purchasing app only works with 2012 and 2013 Samsung Smart TVs connected to the Internet.  Continue reading ShopTV App: Beckham Bodywear to Sell During Super Bowl Spot

NFL and MLB: If Aereo Not Challenged, Sports May Go to Cable

The National Football League and Major League Baseball are trying to convince the Supreme Court to grant broadcasters’ petition to challenge Aereo, a startup that enables unauthorized streaming of local broadcast signals. The NFL and MLB filed an amicus brief that suggests that if Aereo is not challenged, sports programming will likely switch over to cable. Broadcasters assert that Aereo undermines their ability to collect retransmission fees. Continue reading NFL and MLB: If Aereo Not Challenged, Sports May Go to Cable

Fox and American Express Partner for Twitter Ad Campaign

TV networks and advertisers are teaming together to create a new kind of Twitter ad campaign. Fox and American Express have partnered to attach the credit card company’s ads to clips of Fox TV shows, like “New Girl,” that are shared on Twitter. It is American Express’ way of interacting with consumers online in a more informal setting, and it may be the first partnership in which sponsors attach themselves to TV clips spreading on Twitter. Continue reading Fox and American Express Partner for Twitter Ad Campaign

DirecTV to Co-Finance Indie Films in Exchange for VOD Rights

DirecTV is entering the world of film financing through a new partnership with startup movie studio A24 Inc. Through the deal with A24, the satellite operator will acquire independent films in exchange for exclusive rights to offer them on DirecTV’s video-on-demand services 30 days before the indies are released theatrically. DirecTV will initially commit $40 million to co-finance and market independent films; the first acquired with A24 is the thriller “Enemy,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal. Continue reading DirecTV to Co-Finance Indie Films in Exchange for VOD Rights

Social TV: NFL Highlights Coming to a Twitter Feed Near You

The National Football League and Twitter are partnering to deliver football highlights and related content through the social media service. Content will include in-game highlights from the NFL Network on Thursdays and clips from games after they’ve aired on CBS and Fox. The NFL will offer news, analysis and fantasy football advice. The move is part of Twitter’s Amplify program that allows TV content owners to integrate programming in Twitter feeds. The revenue from embedded ads will be shared by the companies. Continue reading Social TV: NFL Highlights Coming to a Twitter Feed Near You

CBS and Time Warner Cable End Month-Long Contract Dispute

CBS and Time Warner Cable ended their contract dispute yesterday, restoring CBS, Showtime and related channels to cable subscribers in the New York, Los Angeles and Dallas markets. For one month, the two sides had been locked into a debate regarding fees related to rights for retransmitting content. Retaining digital rights in order to sell content to online distributors such as Netflix and Amazon was also an issue. CBS and TWC did not release specific information regarding terms of the agreement. Continue reading CBS and Time Warner Cable End Month-Long Contract Dispute

Fox Takes On ESPN Saturday with Launch of Sports Channels

Tomorrow morning, the Speed and Fuel networks will be transformed into the much-hyped Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 channels, in a move intended to compete with ESPN. Fox has landed deals with college conferences Pac-12 and Big 12 football and basketball, Big East basketball, NASCAR, the UFC, Major League Baseball, World Cup soccer and, most recently, the U.S. Open golf championship. The TV everywhere companion app Fox Sports Go will not launch concurrently, as it continues its testing phase. Continue reading Fox Takes On ESPN Saturday with Launch of Sports Channels

Soccer Goes High Tech So Referees Can Make Better Calls

A kicked soccer ball can travel more than ten times faster than what the naked eye can perceive. Soccer referees are human and suffer from this limitation, with soccer fans often enduring the pain. GoalControl, a German company, is looking to fix this problem. It will provide high-tech monitoring of goal lines and reporting systems that help maintain absolute accuracy. This new instant-replay tool will ensure that referees make the right calls. Continue reading Soccer Goes High Tech So Referees Can Make Better Calls

Verizon to Stream Sunday Afternoon NFL Games to Phones

Verizon Wireless will pay the National Football League a reported $1 billion over four years for the rights to make additional football games available on its customers’ smartphones. In a significant move for the mobile industry, the NFL will begin to show Sunday afternoon games on Verizon Wireless phones next year. Select Sunday, Monday and Thursday night games are already available on Verizon phones, but there are typically 10-12 games scheduled on a Sunday afternoon. Continue reading Verizon to Stream Sunday Afternoon NFL Games to Phones

Microsoft Unveils Xbox One, Emphasizes More Than Gaming

As promised, Microsoft announced its Xbox One yesterday, the successor to the Xbox 360 and the company’s eighth generation gaming console. Scheduled for release by the end of this year, the Xbox One will compete with Nintendo’s Wii U and Sony’s upcoming PlayStation 4. While the update touts plenty of power and rich features for gaming, Microsoft is emphasizing the Xbox One as a lifestyle device designed for streaming an array of entertainment media. Continue reading Microsoft Unveils Xbox One, Emphasizes More Than Gaming

Microsoft and NFL Team Up for Interactive Game Broadcasts

Microsoft has announced a partnership with the NFL to develop technology that will make football games more interactive for Xbox Live subscribers. The deal, reportedly worth $400 million over the next five years, was announced yesterday during Microsoft’s unveiling of its next-generation Xbox One gaming console. It marks the latest digital step by the NFL to enhance its live game broadcasts. Continue reading Microsoft and NFL Team Up for Interactive Game Broadcasts

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