Once ‘barbarians at the gate,’ OTT now an opportunity for pay-TV operators

July 21, 2014
Over-the-top video services like Netflix, Hulu and a growing array of others have long been seen as a threat, or at least a bother, to pay-TV providers worried about the cannibalization of their revenue streams. It wasn’t very long ago that one of the most popular panels at any trade show generally was title, “OTT: Friend or Foe.” But a new study posits that operators and OTT players now are “striking an unusual friendship” as consumers continue to adopt OTT in many forms.

Report: Home media gateways drive STB market to best revenue year ever

July 17, 2014
The reports of the death of the pay-TV set-top box may have been a bit premature, depending upon how you define “STB.” The industry, which has been written off multiple times by industry analysts as streaming digital devices moved into the spotlight, had its best revenue year ever in 2013, if you include sales of a growing home media gateway (HMG) segment. IHS reports that sales were up 3% from 2012, to more than $20 million.

China to add 77M IPTV subs by 2020 as global subscriptions double

July 16, 2014
Global IPTV subscriptions are set to more than double by the end of 2020, with revenues increasing more than 63%, new research shows. Subscriptions worldwide will grow to 191 million from 90 million in 2013, and more than 5X the number of IPTV subscribers in 2010, according to The Global IPTV Forecasts report from Digital TV Research. China, currently the largest IPTV country in the world, will remain No. 1 with 77 million subscribers, up from 33 million in 2013.

Binge viewers will watch ads in exchange for better subscription rates

July 14, 2014
Willing to watch a couple of ads while you’re binge viewing in exchange for a lower price tag on your pay-TV subscription? A new study today from Annalect says you are not alone. Binge viewing has quickly become de rigueur among viewers and, with an increasing number of households connected to the Internet, their ranks continue to grow.

‘TV Everywhere’ lost on consumers… but they like it once they know what it is

July 3, 2014
A rose by any other name? One of the biggest problems TV Everywhere has could be the fact that consumers are only vaguely familiar with what it is. Only 19% of pay-TV subscribers said they had “strong” or “pretty good” familiarity with the term “TV Everywhere, although nearly half (49%) say they’ve definitely heard of it once the term was explained to them. A new study from CTAM and Hub Entertainment Research indicates that the industry needs to do a better job of informing its customers of what the service is and how it’s used.

Comcast: World Cup streaming blowing past Sochi Olympics

July 3, 2014
There wasn’t much doubt that the World Cup would set records for streaming viewing globally, soccer is, after all, a very big deal to most of the world. The bigger question was, how would it do in the world’s biggest TV market, the United States? Well, at least one operator, Comcast, says it’s gotten a big kick from the tournament through the first two-and-a-half weeks of play, with its TV Everywhere product, Xfinity TV, drawing more that 9.2 million streams.

Microsofts Xbox 360 gets Showtime Anytime; Xbox One comes later this year

July 2, 2014
Showtime Networks has deployed Showtime Anytime on the Xbox 360, the first time Showtime’s authenticated TV Everywhere play has been made available on a gaming console. Showtime Anytime on Xbox 360 is available to all Xbox Live members who subscribe to Showtime through participating operators. Showtime is making hundreds of hours of programming, as well as the live broadcast of the network's East and West Coast feeds, available on an unlimited basis.

Report: Despite Q1 sub rebound, cord-cutting tendencies remain unchanged

June 6, 2014
Think cable operators are breathing a sigh of relief after subscriber gains in the first quarter? Think again. A new study says adult broadband users remain just as likely to cut the cord as they have been in the past. The study, from The Diffusion Group (TDG) reinforces what some other recent reports have said about cable subscribers’ general dissatisfaction with the pay-TV offerings of their providers.

Cable networks, service providers say TV Everywhere is a top priority

June 5, 2014
TV Everywhere remains a top priority for broadcasters concerned about customer churn and the continuing rise in the popularity of mobile devices. “We need to be where our audience is,” Stuart Schneiderman, SVP consumer insights and measurement at Viacom, told an audience at BroadbandTVcon in Santa Clara, Calif.

Future TV companies need to straddle traditional broadcast, OTT worlds to win

June 4, 2014
One quarter of Millennials – what is generally thought of as the most attractive segment of the consumer market -- are unreachable through traditional TV, a study says, with some 28% of pay-TV subscribers saying that in the next six months they’re “likely” to either cut or shave their current service. To succeed in reaching them, said Eric Berger, EVP of digital networks at Sony Pictures Television (SPT), “TV companies of the future needed to marry the arts and sciences.”

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