Study Finds Many Consumers Seeking Multi-Service Bundles

Bundling is back. Following the cord-cutting that led to a decline in content subscriptions, consumers now indicate they want multi-service deals, with discounts and choice as to what type of content is included. A new study from Hub Entertainment Research indicates that traditional SVODs have declined overall in household usage while areas such as gaming, music, podcasts and social media have increased. “TV is no longer the center of the entertainment universe,” the study suggests, noting premium video only accounts for about 6.3 percent of consumers’ total entertainment sources. Continue reading Study Finds Many Consumers Seeking Multi-Service Bundles

Comcast StreamSaver to Bundle Peacock, Netflix, Apple TV+

Comcast broadband and TV customers will be able to subscribe to a streaming bundle that includes Netflix, Apple TV+ and NBCUniversal’s Peacock, Comcast Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts announced this week at the 2024 MoffettNathanson Media, Internet and Communications Conference in New York. The package, called StreamSaver, will “come at a vastly reduced price to anything in the market today,” Roberts said, though he did not share pricing. Roberts’ plan comes a week after Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery unveiled plans to bundle Max, Disney+ and Hulu starting this summer, with pricing to be announced. Continue reading Comcast StreamSaver to Bundle Peacock, Netflix, Apple TV+

Substack Creator Studio Bows with 10 Video Fellowship Slots

Substack is attempting to lure select TikTok posters to its publishing platform with the launch of Substack Creator Studio. Billed as “a fellowship for the next wave of video stars to turn their TikTok channels into Substack shows and communities,” the outlet says video-native creators will be able to forge a “more direct, intimate relationship with their audience” on Substack, while making money from subscriptions. Only 10 fellows will be initially selected, and given access to consulting and production support from Adam Faze’s Gymnasium short-form studio, producer of the TikTok series “Boy Room.” Continue reading Substack Creator Studio Bows with 10 Video Fellowship Slots

GitHub Puts Copilot Workspace Developer Platform in Preview

GitHub has introduced Copilot Workspace, a Copilot-native developer environment for artificial intelligence, in technical preview. Developers are invited to sign up for a waitlist for the service, which allows the use of natural language to plan, build, test and run code. The Microsoft-owned company has introduced various aspects of Copilot over the past few years, adding an autocomplete pair programmer in 2022, and in 2023 Copilot Chat for natural language coding, debugging and testing, “allowing developers to converse with their code in real time.” The “task-centric” Copilot Workspace leverages different agents for a “start-to-finish experience.” Continue reading GitHub Puts Copilot Workspace Developer Platform in Preview

Alphabet Profit Up 57 Percent, Prompting First-Ever Dividend

Alphabet reported revenue of $80.5 billion for Q1, a 15 percent increase fueled largely by online advertising from Google Search and YouTube. The figure topped analyst estimates of $78.8 billion. Profit soared, rising 57 percent to more than $23.6 billion, wildly overperforming the forecast of $18.9 billion. The strong performance resulted in Alphabet announcing its first ever shareholder dividend, at 20 cents per share, which pays out on June 17. Alphabet’s board approved a $70 billion stock repurchase program, and the news-filled earnings event drove Alphabet shares up 13 percent in after-hours trading. Continue reading Alphabet Profit Up 57 Percent, Prompting First-Ever Dividend

Netflix Adds 9.3 Million Subscribers, $2.3 Billion in Profit in Q1

Netflix has added 9.33 million paid subscribers in Q1, a 16 percent year-over-year increase to 269.6 million worldwide. The growth, attributed largely to a password-sharing crackdown, has delivered the company’s strongest first-quarter customer expansion since the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The dominant global streamer boosted Q1 revenue by nearly 15 percent year-over-year, to $9.37 billion, and drove profits to more than $2.3 billion for the quarter, a 78.7 percent gain over the same period last year (and a 148 percent leap from Q4’s $938 million). A surprise to many, Netflix announced it will cease reporting quarterly subscriber gains in Q1 2025. Continue reading Netflix Adds 9.3 Million Subscribers, $2.3 Billion in Profit in Q1

Streaming Drives U.S. Recorded Music to Record $17 Billion

U.S. recorded music revenue grew 8 percent in 2023, to an estimated record high of $17.1 billion at retail. It was the eighth consecutive year of growth, according to the RIAA, which says streaming continued to be the biggest driver, notching new heights of paid subscriptions, robust growth in ad-supported listening, and healthy increased contributions from new platforms. Streaming accounted for 84 percent of retail revenue, at $14.4 billion including from 96.8 million paid subscriptions. On the supply-side, wholesale revenue grew 7 percent to $11 billion, also a record. Continue reading Streaming Drives U.S. Recorded Music to Record $17 Billion

Gen Z, Millennials Prefer Social Videos to Streaming Services

A 2024 Digital Media Trends study by Deloitte says media and entertainment companies “should be thinking more about the world ahead than the one they’re being forced to leave behind,” a suggestion underscored by the fact that 60 percent of Gen Zs surveyed prefer watching user-generated content on social platforms to programming offered by streaming services “because they don’t have to spend time searching for what to watch.” Both Gen Zs and Millennials also believe they get better recommendations from social media than the commercial platforms (54 percent). Continue reading Gen Z, Millennials Prefer Social Videos to Streaming Services

YouTube TV Begins Offering Multiview for iPhones and iPads

Google is beginning to extend YouTube TV’s multiview functionality to mobile platforms, with iPhones and iPads added in time for March Madness and Android coming in the months ahead. During early access, some users will see an option to simultaneously watch up to four different, though pre-selected, streams in their “Top Picks for You” section. After selecting multiview, viewers will be able to toggle audio and captioning between streams and can jump in and out of a particular game’s full screen view. YouTube TV announced multiview last month “on all devices that support multiview.” Continue reading YouTube TV Begins Offering Multiview for iPhones and iPads

GitHub Copilot Enterprise in General Release at $39 Monthly

GitHub Copilot Enterprise is being released for general availability for $39 per month. Calling the tool GitHub’s “most advanced AI offering to date,” the company says it can be customized to an organization’s knowledge and codebase, placing “the institutional knowledge of your organization at your developers’ fingertips.” Infusing GitHub Copilot Enterprise throughout a company’s software development lifecycle lets team members “ask questions about public and private code, get up to speed quickly with new codebases and build greater consistencies across engineering teams” while ensuring everyone access to the same standard codebase. Continue reading GitHub Copilot Enterprise in General Release at $39 Monthly

Apple Sports App Provides Stats, Real-Time Scores and More

Apple Sports is a new free app for iPhones that delivers real-time scores, stats and more via a GUI designed by Apple. Available to download from the App Store in the U.S., Canada and UK, the app currently tracks Major League Soccer, Premier League soccer, the National Basketball Association, men’s and women’s NCAA basketball, and the National Hockey League, among others. More sports will be added over time, Apple said, mentioning Major League Baseball and the National Football League. The concept is designed to keep fans continuously connected to their favorite teams while driving Apple TV tune-in. Continue reading Apple Sports App Provides Stats, Real-Time Scores and More

MoviePass Reaches 1 Million Tickets Sold and Turns First Profit

MoviePass says it has sold more than 1 million tickets since relaunching last spring, and has also announced the first profitable year in the company’s 13-year history. Co-founder and CEO Stacy Spikes, who purchased the company out of bankruptcy in 2021, is giving artificial intelligence much of the credit for the turnaround. The MoviePass Cinematic Marketplace is an aggregator for the theatrical industry that uses AI and machine learning to improve attendance engagement and ticket sales. Spikes says hitting the milestones “highlights the powerful impact” the technology enhancements have had “from the previous business model.” Continue reading MoviePass Reaches 1 Million Tickets Sold and Turns First Profit

YouTube TV Expands NBA League Pass Choices in Multiview

To the appreciation, if not delight, of sports fans, Google is allowing YouTube TV subscribers to exercise more choice in what games to watch in their multiview windows. YouTube TV offers the option of watching up to four different sporting or news events simultaneously on a single screen. However, it doesn’t allow endless free choice, but presents combination options. Users complained and Google responded by serving up more multiview combinations to choose from, but stopped short of generating customizable multiplex streaming feeds for each user. Continue reading YouTube TV Expands NBA League Pass Choices in Multiview

Amazon Stands to Gain $3 Billion a Year from Prime Video Ads

Amazon this week began serving advertising to Prime Video customers who did not elect to pay an additional $2.99 per month in addition to the basic annual Prime membership of $139 per year or $14.99 per month. Adding commercials is estimated to potentially bring in more than $3 billion a year for Amazon, which is expected to have 2023 revenue of around $567 billion. The surplus will come in handy to pay out $1 billion a year over 11 years for the rights to NFL’s “Thursday Night Football.” The ad-supported Prime Video service launches in the U.S., Canada, UK and Germany, with Mexico, France, Italy, Spain and Australia following later in the year. Continue reading Amazon Stands to Gain $3 Billion a Year from Prime Video Ads

Netflix Adds WWE, Touts 12.5 Percent Revenue Growth in Q4

Netflix added 13.1 million subscribers in Q4 2023, its biggest gain in a year-end quarter, and the streamer continues to try to broaden its demographic reach by investing in new content, including a new deal for live WWE wrestling matches. The expansion into live-streaming provides an opportunity to draw regular, appointment viewers, something advertisers like. “No entertainment company has ever tried to program at this scale, and for so many tastes and cultures,” Netflix wrote in a shareholder letter that says it plans to spend up to $17 billion on content in 2024. Continue reading Netflix Adds WWE, Touts 12.5 Percent Revenue Growth in Q4