Facebook Unveils Tools, Metrics to Improve Video Production

Not long ago, Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg predicted that video would be the dominant means of communication on the social platform. To give that goal a leg up, the company unveiled tools to help video creators improve the odds of engaging audiences. The video analytics include the ability to break down minutes of a video view by age, gender and geographic location. Facebook also introduced tools to help creators tell stories with 360 videos, by enabling a “guide” of story points that viewers can opt to follow. Continue reading Facebook Unveils Tools, Metrics to Improve Video Production

Foursquare’s Revamped Mobile App Now Personalizes Results

Foursquare has made dramatic changes in its smartphone app while rethinking its approach to local business recommendations. Since the company became popular in 2009 due to its check-in feature, Facebook and Instagram have taken much of that attention with their own check-in features. The revised app urges users to explore their surroundings while using Foursquare as their guide, with its database of 10,000 “tastes” to help users discover exactly what they want. Continue reading Foursquare’s Revamped Mobile App Now Personalizes Results

Rovi Tech Personalizes Cable Guide with Recommendations

California-based Rovi is developing technology that will turn cable TV guides from endless grids to a more-personalized recommendation service. Its version of the TV guide tracks viewer habits to make recommendations based on what the viewer has watched before, at what time, and even in what room. It searches through the live line-up, on-demand content, and Netflix to make recommendations. Users can also search for movies and shows using voice commands. Continue reading Rovi Tech Personalizes Cable Guide with Recommendations

Netflix to Be Available to 500,000 Cable Subscribers Next Week

Netflix has reached an agreement with cable companies RCN, Grande Communications and Atlantic Broadband that will allow subscribers to basically access the streaming video service as if it were a cable channel starting next week. Netflix will be added as an app to set-top boxes to provide subscribers with the option of viewing the Netflix content they would otherwise access via computers and mobile devices. The offer is only available for customers of the cable companies who also subscribe to Netflix. Continue reading Netflix to Be Available to 500,000 Cable Subscribers Next Week

New Mohu Channels Adapter Combines Streaming and HDTV

After raising nearly $145,000 on Kickstarter, antenna maker Mohu plans to release its Channels TV adapter this June. The Mohu Channels device is a TV adapter that combines free over-the-air HDTV broadcasts with online video streaming services, such as Netflix, YouTube, and Hulu Plus. Mohu also hopes to include the ability to play back local files, time shifting functionality to pause and fast forward through live programming, and an Android app that can be used as a remote. Continue reading New Mohu Channels Adapter Combines Streaming and HDTV

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

Digital Video Content Not a Replacement for TV Programming

According to a new Consumer Electronics Association study, 79 percent of online U.S. adults obtain the video content they watch from traditional TV providers, although a significant number of viewers are turning to other sources. Online video streaming is most common with consumers ages 18-34. However, traditional TV viewing remains consistent for most age groups, suggesting that online services are being used as a supplement rather than a replacement of traditional programming. Continue reading Digital Video Content Not a Replacement for TV Programming

Viggle Purchases Dijit Media and Popular TV App NextGuide

TV loyalty program provider Viggle, formed in 2010, announced it has acquired San Francisco-based Dijit Media, a b2b platform developer and maker of TV and movie guide apps for mobile devices. Dijit’s primary consumer app is NextGuide, which combines listings from live TV and streaming services such as Amazon, Hulu, iTunes and Netflix for an automated and curated directory of movies and television shows. Financial terms of the deal have yet to be disclosed. Continue reading Viggle Purchases Dijit Media and Popular TV App NextGuide

VIDAA: Hisense Unveils its Android-Based Smart TV Platform

At CES, Hisense showed its new line of VIDAA smart TVs, the first to incorporate Android since Google TV ceased to formally exist. The new displays come after Google scrapped the manufacturing of its own display and began allowing other manufacturers to build TVs with built-in Android technology. Google services like Chrome and TV programming guide Primetime are available on the displays. The platform was developed by Ontario-based design and engineering company Jamdeo. Continue reading VIDAA: Hisense Unveils its Android-Based Smart TV Platform

Rovi Team Experiments with Brainwaves Project to Control TV

Through its cloud-based platform, Rovi powers digital entertainment solutions in discovery and personalization for leading brands. A small band of dreamers at Rovi demonstrated an experimental project at the guide makers exhibit at Caesar’s Palace during CES. Using a headset that monitors both brainwaves and nearby nerve activity, after a short training period it was possible to go from watching TV to the guide with a literal blink of the eyes, and then select a new program with a bit of concentration on the guide. Continue reading Rovi Team Experiments with Brainwaves Project to Control TV

Amazon Studios to Shoot Original Programming in 4K Ultra HD

Amazon Studios, the film and TV production arm of Amazon.com, announced this week that it plans to shoot all of its original series next year in 4K Ultra HD. Amazon plans to debut five new comedy and drama pilots in 2014, from producers and performers such as Chris Carter, Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman, Michael Strahan and others. Viewers will help determine which pilots should be produced as exclusive series on Prime Instant Video and LOVEFiLM in the UK. Continue reading Amazon Studios to Shoot Original Programming in 4K Ultra HD

Twitter Providing TV Suggestions Based on its User Activity

Twitter is intent on becoming like a social TV guide for its users, and the newest phase of that strategy can be seen in the platform’s latest app update. Now, in the corner of the screen, Twitter promotes television shows to users based on how active those users are. The idea is to drive traffic to TV programs. Down the line this kind of marketing will likely be monetized, but it needs to be done in a way that current and new users understand and do not find annoying. Continue reading Twitter Providing TV Suggestions Based on its User Activity

Microsoft Makes Bold Move with Xbox One to Hijack Your TV

While products such as Microsoft’s WebTV and platforms including Windows Media Center have failed to displace the cable box as the primary entertainment device in the living room, connected Xbox game consoles have become multimedia powerhouses over time. And with the launch of its new Xbox One in less than two weeks, Microsoft is banking on consumers who want to play games, run apps, control their television, and communicate with others — all in one location. Continue reading Microsoft Makes Bold Move with Xbox One to Hijack Your TV

TV App i.TV Acquires GetGlue for Powerful Social TV Platform

In an effort to create a more powerful second screen and social TV platform, i.TV has acquired the popular check-in service GetGlue. The i.TV app for iOS and Android is the most downloaded TV guide and discovery app with 15 million subscribers, and has been working to build up its backend. Now, with GetGlue’s more than 4.5 million users, the company plans on giving users a well-rounded platform on which they can get more recommendations for their entertainment. Continue reading TV App i.TV Acquires GetGlue for Powerful Social TV Platform

NextGuide Has New Network Partners for TV Show Reminders

San Francisco-based TV guide startup Digit Media — the company behind the NextGuide personal TV watchlist service — has launched new partnerships with Fox, BBC America and truTV. As part of the deals, the networks will add a Reminder Button to their program websites. By clicking on the button, consumers can register for NextGuide and receive reminder alerts via email or the NextGuide iOS app, letting them know when new episodes are about to air on TV. Continue reading NextGuide Has New Network Partners for TV Show Reminders

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