Representatives from Microsoft, Amazon, and Apple, companies that haven’t been regulated by the FCC, have been increasing their face time at the FCC to keep the agency from advancing a proceeding that would regulate some OTT services like facilities-based multi-channel video distributors.
The deal, which extends into the next decade and includes all rights across all platforms, is a public olive branch after the two companies clashed when Comcast was attempting its $45 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable, a bid that it abandoned in April.
In a few years, ESPN will likely be a channel that cable-ditching consumers can buy directly as a streaming-only option, Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger told CNBC Monday.“If we end up seeing more erosion in the so-called multichannel bundle (cable or satellite TV packages), quality will win out and popularity will win out,” he told CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” adding the ESPN-only option will not happen in the next five years.
If you want to stream your music instead of buy tracks, there are more options than you can shake a stick at. You’ve got Spotify, Rdio, XBox Music (Microsoft), Amazon, Apple Music and Google Play just to name a few. One of the players, Google, which happens to have the world’s biggest search engine, has chosen to only recognize a few of them.
FCC commissioner Mignon Clyburn has called on FCC chairman Tom Wheeler to launch an inquiry into the program access and carriage rules and ongoing barriers to independent and diverse programming in the wake of the FCC’s decision to approve the AT&T/DirecTV deal.
As OTT distribution of video continues to multiply, video and broadband service providers must navigate shifting net neutrality regulations, which are subject to multiple interpretations. Operational strategies like caching, peering, and content delivery networks (CDNs) complicate the net neutrality and open Internet debate, leaving service providers guessing.
In a statement, AT&T chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson stressed that the $48.5 billion deal will ensure consumers’ viewing preferences can be better met, “whether [viewers] want a traditional TV service with premier programming, their favourite content on a mobile device, or video streamed over the Internet to any screen.”
While many TV viewers know Roker from his years spent forecasting weather for “Today” and other venues, fewer know that he has led a small TV-production company for more than two decades. The shop, Al Roker Entertainment, will this week launch three new “shows” that he will transmit via Meerkat, the mobile app that allows users to watch live streaming video. Each of the programs will last five to fifteen minutes, and Roker freely admits he’s experimenting, not necessarily banking on outsize success on his first few attempts.
Following quarter after quarter of leading TV additions — offsetting cable losses — the US IPTV services Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-verse have had their worst quarter of video customer growth ever.
Hulu, under the leadership of new CEO Mike Hopkins, appears to be ready for change. Whether the ad-free service replaces or comes on top of the current paid and basic model isn’t clear, nor is it guaranteed that the rumors of an ad-free service are true. But Hulu needs to change to move forward.
Verizon is getting ready to launch a new mobile video service called Go90 this summer, Variety has learned. Go90 promises users full episodes of TV shows from select networks as well as music videos and other shortform content, and the company will at least initially offer the service entirely free of charge.
The U.S. Hispanic-targeted broadcaster has announced the launch of the Univision Creators Network (UCN), a hand-picked network of content producers from YouTube, Vine and other video outlets. Univision says the new network is responsible for over 118 million video views each month. And, interestingly, most of these creators produce content in English.
Turning the ocean of free, ad-supported music videos on YouTube – including many amateur renditions of popular songs – into a subscription service where music labels and artists get their rightful cut of the revenue is tricky, both technically and contractually. The labels are already unhappy about the amount of free music on YouTube, and the rise of other popular paid streaming services like Spotify has given them more leverage in negotiations with YouTube.
The e-commerce company beloved by Wall Street for its fast-growing ways did something completely out of character in the second quarter: It made a profit. It was only $92 million, practically a rounding error for Google or Apple. But it confirmed all the hopes and expectations of analysts and investors, who immediately pushed Amazon shares up 17 percent in after-hours trading Thursday to $566.