Almost a year ago, in a post titled “Video is Quickly Becoming Bait for Wireless Carriers to Lure and Retain Subscribers,” I detailed how big carriers were aggressively discounting and bundling various video services in order to support their wireless businesses.
Last Thursday we got a glimpse of how the “video as bait” strategy is soon going to be taken to a new level. In court testimony concerning AT&T’s proposed acquisition of Time Warner, AT&T’s CEO Randall Stephenson said that in the coming weeks the company would launch a $15/month sports-free skinny bundle dubbed “AT&T Watch.” As CNN reported, the kicker is that for AT&T’s unlimited wireless subscribers, the service would be free. As such, it is the most dramatic example yet of how wireless companies see video as little more than a bonus feature to drive their core businesses.
I’m pleased to present the 416th edition of the VideoNuze podcast, with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
Netflix reported its Q1 ’18 results earlier this week and once again the performance was very strong, with revenue up 43% and average paid streaming subscribers up 25% to 125 million globally. Colin and I discuss what’s driving the company. With 55.1 million paid U.S. subscribers at the end of Q1, it’s possible that Netflix will hit 60 million by the end of 2018, which is the low end of the range of 60-90 million the company has long said it believed it could achieve.
We then turn to discussing Amazon’s new deal with Best Buy for its “Fire TV Edition” smart TVs, which were announced earlier this week. We agree that the move is yet another aggressive step in Amazon’s goal to dominate both the living room and whole home. Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos also announced this week that Prime has hit 100 million subscribers with video continuing to drive acquisition and retention. Colin and I both see Amazon expanding further by launching a skinny bundle pay-TV service sometime in 2018.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (24 minutes, 7 seconds)
Ad tech provider AppNexus grew Microsoft’s video ad revenue from instream video inventory in Q1 ’18 by 201% vs. Q1 ’17, according to an announcement by the companies. In addition, Microsoft’s eCPMs increased by 29% in Q1 ’18 vs. Q1 ’17. Microsoft said it had expanded its partnership with AppNexus from 1 ad format in 1 market to 3 ad formats in 65 markets, including Europe and emerging markets.
You can save $100 now on registration for the 8th annual VideoNuze Online Video Advertising Summit on Tuesday, June 12th at the Westin Times Square in NYC. On top of saving $100, you also double your chances* of winning a 55-inch Roku TV, generously provided by Roku.
The Video Ad Summit is the premier event of the year for anyone in the industry seeking insights and data about online video advertising and how it’s converging with traditional TV advertising, mobile and connected TV advertising and the broader digital landscape. The program includes a compelling mix of keynotes, panel discussions and research presentations covering the hottest topics in the industry. Detailed program info will be posted soon.
I'm grateful to the 10 industry-leading companies on board as initial sponsors, including Premier Partners Extreme Reach and Verizon Digital Media Services; Headline Partners 4C, AppNexus, Beachfront Media, Operative and Taboola and Branding Partners Brightcove, Cedato and Roku.
If you'd like to learn more about speaking and sponsorship opportunities, please contact me.
(*Early bird registrants get 2 entries for the Roku TV drawing.)