Netflix Will Continue Broadcast Partnerships, Remain Ad-Free

Maria Ferreras, Netflix VP of business development for EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), explained that Netflix will not discontinue its broadcast partnerships in which it takes global rights outside a production’s territory of origin. Speaking at the IBC Conference in Amsterdam, Ferreras pointed to a production in partnership with the United Kingdom’s Channel 4 as an example. U.K. producers have been concerned that Netflix would cease these partnerships as it gets deeper into local production. The company also reiterated it would not run ads on its streaming service. Continue reading Netflix Will Continue Broadcast Partnerships, Remain Ad-Free

Kaltura to Offer Cloud-Based TV Services on Microsoft Azure

Video technology provider Kaltura has announced its partnership with Microsoft’s cloud computing platform Azure to offer a new scalable, end-to-end OTT platform. Kaltura has integrated with Azure to encode, store and deliver OTT TV content via the cloud. According to the company release: “Microsoft Azure enables operators and media companies to leverage Kaltura OTT TV to launch OTT services while quickly scaling, with pay-as-you-go services. Microsoft is committed to protecting subscriber data, enhancing control of premium content and privacy.” Continue reading Kaltura to Offer Cloud-Based TV Services on Microsoft Azure

Research Points to Internet Impacting TV Ratings, Ad Revenue

According to new figures released by Moffett Nathanson Research, the growth of online ads will have a significant impact on traditional television and other media. Analyst Michael Nathanson predicts that ad spending on TV will decrease by 3 percent annually through 2020. He also forecasts that online advertising, led by tech giants Google and Facebook, will increase annually by 12 percent over the next five years and exceed spending for TV ads by 2017. The forecast comes as cable TV ratings are down 9 percent and 566,000 cable and satellite subscribers canceled their service during Q2. Continue reading Research Points to Internet Impacting TV Ratings, Ad Revenue

Huawei Rises To the 4G Challenge with New Ascend Mate2

Chinese phone manufacturer Huawei is making its move to break into the U.S. market and onto the global scene with the Ascend Mate2, a 4G LTE phone with a splashy 6.1-inch screen and other features that aim it squarely at the active social and entertainment user. A zippy 1.6GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon quad core processor and 2.4GHz/5GHz dual band Wi-Fi powers 150mbps LTE Cat4 transfer speeds, making it possible to download a feature film in one minute, according to Huawei. Continue reading Huawei Rises To the 4G Challenge with New Ascend Mate2

IBC 2013: Broadcast Community Debates the Future of 4K TV

During the recent International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam, the broadcast community debated the practicality of Ultra HD, challenges involved with achieving it, and whether consumers will care. While industry interest remains mixed, companies such as Sky Deutschland and BSkyB are presently testing 4K broadcast transmissions. Stakeholders in Europe are expected to be early adopters of the format, with one estimate projecting more than 110 million Ultra HD displays to reach homes by 2025. Continue reading IBC 2013: Broadcast Community Debates the Future of 4K TV

IBC 2013: Ultra HD Planned for World Cup and Tokyo Olympics

At the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam on Friday, FIFA and Sony announced that next year’s World Cup Final in Brazil will be produced in 4K. Sony also revealed it is developing production equipment to support 8K technology, and that 8K broadcasts are being planned for coverage of the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020. Sony hopes the announcements will help spark interest in Ultra HD, including the ultra sharp 8K, which is 16 times the resolution of current HD offerings. Continue reading IBC 2013: Ultra HD Planned for World Cup and Tokyo Olympics

Scratch Play: Assimilate Launches Universal Media Player

Santa Clara, CA-based Assimilate has launched a free media player for visual effects artists, cinematographers and prosumers that supports Raw footage from digital cinematography and DSLR cameras. The new Scratch Play also supports formats such as OpenEXR and ProRes, providing digital imaging professionals and DSLR enthusiasts with the ability to review shots, pull stills, export CDLs or LUTs, and review animation at full resolution. Continue reading Scratch Play: Assimilate Launches Universal Media Player

Disruptive TV Trends: What is the Future of the Business of Television?

  • Amsterdam’s annual IBC event offered a number of potential TV game-changers earlier this month, suggests TVNewsCheck. These include cloud-based or service-oriented architecture (SOA) applications for capturing, producing, processing and distributing digital video and audio; IT-based playout (channel in a box) tools that could potentially make broadcast playout more affordable; and 3D technology likely to be deployed for the 2012 London Olympics.
  • Also on display were technologies “aimed at making 3D production more affordable and compatible with standard 2D operations.”
  • Cloud services were at the forefront since broadcasters are now challenged by having to support an increasing number of distribution platforms.
  • Vendors discussed the fundamental concerns about cloud-based architectures, “notably content security, access to content, collaboration, bandwidth and workflow continuity,” reports TVNewsCheck.
  • In a related article from GigaOM that analyzes shifts in traditional television, venture capitalist Habib Kairouz writes that the TV industry is poised for some significant changes due to a number of upcoming trends: TV anywhere and anytime will catch on; the rise of the Internet-connected TV and interactive programming; and personalized advertising.
  • The article suggests that content owners will benefit as MSOs, IPTV providers, and others compete with one another. MSO’s are hedging their bets by purchasing both traditional and interactive content, while TV manufacturers are looking to build Internet services into their low margin businesses. We should watch for new entrants to increase the disruption in this space.

Adobe Announces Acquisition of IRIDAS Film and Video Technology

  • Adobe announced at IBC in Amsterdam that it has acquired certain assets of IRIDAS, “a leader in high-performance tools for digital color grading and enhancement of professional film and video content, including stereoscopic technology.”
  • The deal is part of Adobe’s efforts to invest in its own video software solutions, Premiere Pro and After Effects, at a time when videography is democratizing (especially with the arrival of video SLRs) and some consumers are frustrated by changes to Final Cut Pro.
  • “The IRIDAS Speedgrade software offers the ability to refine video in a number of ways, notably what’s called color grading, which can shift a video’s color tones to give a particular look,” reports CNET.
  • According to Adobe’s press release: “With the addition of IRIDAS technology, Adobe Creative Suite Production Premium and Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection, the world’s leading video tools for professionals, are expected to gain a comprehensive set of tools so video editors can manipulate color and light for any type of content, including professional film and television. The addition of premier color grading tools exemplifies Adobe’s commitment and leadership in the digital film and video space.”
  • Adobe also explained that the deal will help the company move forward in regards to the growing trend in 3D video.