VideoNuze 2016 Online Video Advertising Summit EB - leaderboard - 4-22-16

Analysis for 'Devices'

  • Connected TVs in 65% of U.S. TV Homes Shows Living Room Has Been Permanently Transformed

    The latest evidence of the complete transformation of the living room landed in my inbox last Friday morning as I was preparing to head out of town: according to Leichtman Research Group’s latest study, a whopping 65% of U.S. TV households now have at least one TV connected to the Internet.

    And among that 65% of U.S. TV homes, 26% have one device, 22% have two, 29% have 3-4 and 23% have 5 or more. That means approximately 15% of U.S. TV homes are in a similar category as me (I have a Tivo, Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV and Chromecast) and I thought I was an extreme case because I’m in the business. LRG said the mean for those with a connected TV is 3.3 devices.

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  • Perspective What's this? How Brands Can Use Connected TV to Strengthen Competitive Advantage

    Many brands are overlooking a major opportunity to increase their ad revenue: connected TV.

    While research from eMarketer shows that this medium has already taken up residence in more than half of American households and is expected to be in 60 percent by 2019, connected TV remains a forgotten screen among many marketers and media buyers. Yet brands that learn how to effectively incorporate connected TV into their advertising campaign strategies stand to achieve significant competitive advantages.

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  • With Google Cast, Are Smart TVs On Their Way Back to Dumb-Dumb Land?

    Back in July, 2013, when Google introduced Chromecast, I speculated in “Just When TVs Were Getting Smart, Chromecast Will Make Them Dumb Again,” that the little $35 device could overturn years of TV manufacturers’ investments in making TVs “smart.” Flash forward to this week’s formal unveiling of “Google Cast” and the Vizio P-Series with SmartCast, and the vision of TVs heading back to dumb-dumb land could be underway.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #311: NBCU Adopts Programmatic TV; Conflicting Connected TV Forecasts

    I'm pleased to present the 311th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    First up this week we discuss NBCU’s announcement on Wednesday that it will allow select advertisers and agencies to buy ads programmatically in its linear TV networks. It’s another important step in advertising becoming more data-infused and targeted, though as I explained, it’s not yet a full-blown programmatic offering like we’ve seen in video and display. Colin and I dig into the details.

    We then turn to new research on connected TV adoption and forecasts. Colin details findings from 3 different sources, which differ from one another. We attempt to reconcile them, although not fully successfully. Regardless, connected TVs remain one of the pivotal areas of online video, providing access to high-quality long-form content in the living room.

    Listen now to learn more!

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  • Perspective What's this? Will The FCC Proposal To Unlock Set-Top Boxes Bring Change Or More Of The Same?

    FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is circulating a proposal that would “tear down anti-competitive barriers and pave the way for software, devices and other innovative solutions to compete with the set-top boxes that a majority of consumers must lease today.” The proposal is up for vote on February 18.
     
    According to the FCC, the set-top box (STB) business costs consumers $20B per year. The intent of the proposal is to open the market to competition, giving consumers the option to buy STBs from third-parties, presumably at a lower price.
     
    But we’ve seen this movie before – a few times, actually. Previous FCC mandates following similar proposals has resulted in the cable industry implementing CableCard, OpenCable (OCAP) and, most recently, Tru2Way. In all of these cases, the so-called solutions fell short in one way or another as the status quo prevailed.  This begs the question: can a new FCC-mandated approach be successful or does this movie have the same old ending? Let’s take a deeper look at what the FCC actually wants to accomplish, the proposed solutions and new approaches that could make this time different.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #309: Cable Operators Buck Cord-Cutting; FCC’s Set-Top Box Mandate

    I'm pleased to present the 309th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    First up this week we discuss Comcast’s robust Q4 ’15 earnings results. Despite all of the talk of cord-cutting, Comcast had its best year for video subscribers in 8 years, improving its loss to just 39K. In addition, both Charter and Time Warner Cable actually reported video subscriber gains for 2015.

    Once again, Comcast cited its X1 next-gen set-top box as the key driver of success. Colin and I have talked about X1’s value in the past, and it’s clearly a game-changer for the company.

    Ironically, Comcast’s success with X1 is happening even as FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is calling for a new technology mandate on the pay-TV industry to give access to third-party set-tops. Colin and I discuss why we think market forces are a superior choice to government intervention.

    Last, we’ll both be watching the Super Bowl this weekend, which will be a milestone in allowing cord-cutters and cord-nevers to stream for free to connected TV devices.
     
    Listen now to learn more!

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  • Roku's Hybrid Set-Top Underscores Folly of FCC's Latest Regulatory Move

    Late last week Roku announced it was developing a hybrid set-top box, expanding on the “Roku Powered” partner program it announced back in September, 2014. Roku’s hybrid set-top will give pay-TV operators a single, inexpensive device to deliver linear and OTT services. Variety also reported that Roku has raised an additional $45.5 million, bringing total funding to date to approximately $200 million.  

    Ironically (though perhaps not coincidentally), Roku’s hybrid set-top news came at the end of a week during which FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler unveiled a new regulatory initiative to “Unlock the Set-Top Box.” While his plan is light on details, it would essentially impose a new technology mandate on pay-TV operators to provide access to their programming to device manufacturers such that new interfaces and retail business models could be developed.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #308: Week in Review - Facebook, Nielsen Data, Sundance, Netflix Censorship

    I'm pleased to present the 308th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    In today’s podcast we discuss a number of different items that hit our radar this week. We start with Facebook’s growing impact in video, which was detailed on the company’s earning call earlier this week.

    We then transition recent research from Nielsen which Colin analyzed, showing the level of viewership by device.

    Next up, Colin and I were watching reports from the Sundance Film Festival noting the aggressive bidding by Amazon and Netflix, underscoring another industry segment being disrupted by SVOD. Last, we touch on the problems Netflix is already running into with its international expansion. Indonesia was the latest country to raise red flags on Netflix’s content this week.
     
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  • Next-Gen Video Service Sky Q Gets Boost from AirTies Mesh Technology

    Sky Q, which is Sky’s next-generation video service launching in 2016, will incorporate AirTies mesh technology to facilitate whole home pay-TV service on multiple devices. With AirTies mesh technology in Sky Q’s set-top boxes, routers and accessory devices, each is turned into a hot spot, so that linear, OTT and recorded video can be accessed on screens even in harder-to-reach locations in the home.

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  • iSpot.tv is Now Measuring TV Ads Across 10 Million Connected TVs

    iSpot.tv has announced it is now measuring TV ad performance in linear, time-shifted, VOD and OTT video across 10 million connected TVs. iSpot is tracking TV ads’ view rates, impressions and unduplicated reach, providing unprecedented granular insight into actual TV ad performance.  

    iSpot’s founder and CEO Sean Muller explained that the new measurement system is enabled by deals the company has made with select TV manufacturers to integrate its technology with newer connected TVs automatic content recognition. As the ads viewed are anonymously relayed to iSpot, they are checked against the company’s database of ads, gleaned from its core platform which tracks the entire media schedule in linear TV. The ads are then sorted as linear national, linear local or VOD/OTT as well as live vs. time-shifted. The length of each ad’s play is tracked to provide the view time metrics.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #306: Predictions for 2016

    I'm pleased to present the 306th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    This week Colin and I share our top predictions for the video industry in 2016. We also look back at our predictions for 2015 and rate how we did (how’s that for accountability?).

    Listen now to learn more!

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  • GoPro's Nascent Media Business Up in the Air After Sales Collapse and Leadership Change

    In case you missed it, GoPro released disastrous Q4 and full year 2015 earnings estimates late yesterday, acknowledging once and for all that its new HERO4 Session was a holiday season dud, even at its reduced price. In addition, GoPro said it would cut its staff by 7% and that SVP, GoPro Entertainment, Zander Lurie was stepping down after just 13 months (he’s moving to a board position at GoPro and becoming CEO of SurveyMonkey).

    All of these moves raise the question about what is to become of GoPro’s much-hyped expansion into the media business.

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  • Perspective What's this? Video Ad Market Predictions For 2016

    The numbers used to analyze the video ad market can be cut in many different ways.
     
    According to the IAB, video ad spend on desktop totalled US$2.0 billion, or 7% of digital ad spend, in the first half of 2015. The peak body also listed mobile video spend, a figure of less than US$300 million for the period, in its H1-15 Internet Advertising Revenue Report.
     
    Yet we know more than this is being spent on digital video. The IAB’s report doesn’t capture ads sold in over-the-top (OTT) TV content, programming which can be delivered via desktops as well as a range of other connected devices. Data from The Diffusion Group in April forecasts ad revenue from OTT TV will reach US$8.4 billion in 2015, a number well below broadcast TV’s expected $60 billion haul.

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  • Amazon Adds More Content to Fire TV, But SPP Implementations Have Barely Begun

    Amazon announced this morning that it has added content from NBC, NBC Sports, Watch HGTV, Watch Food Network, Watch Travel Channel, Fox Now, NPR One, GoPro and others to Fire TV. Amazon said there are now over 4,000 channels, apps and games available in Fire TV, which it believes is the largest of any connected TV device. Amazon also said Amazon is the top-selling connected TV device “across all retailers” from July-October, though it’s not clear what retailers are included.

    All of this additional content strengthens Fire TV, especially in the all-important holiday season. Conversely, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my Fire TV over the past week, and I’ve been surprised, and quite disappointed, with Fire TV’s implementation (or lack thereof) of the 20 content partners Amazon announced on Dec. 8th as part of its new “Streaming Partners Program” (SPP).

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  • FreeWheel’s Q3 Video Monetization Report Shows Continued Industry Growth

    FreeWheel has released its Q3 ’15 Video Monetization Report (VMR), which reveals the continuation of a number of important industry trends. Both ad views and video views grew 28% vs. Q3 ’14, consistent with growth rates seen over the past few quarters.

    Live video was once again the fastest-growing genre, with a 113% year-over-year growth, compared to 30% for long-form and 9% for short-form. Sports was again the biggest driver of live with 63% of sports video viewed live, compared with 17% of news video viewed live (other genres were in low single digits). News had the biggest proportion of short-form (76%), while Entertainment (60%) ad Kids (59%) had the biggest proportion of long-form.

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  • Beachfront Media Launches Full Service RISE OTT Platform For Connected TVs and Mobile

    Beachfront Media has launched RISE, a full-service OTT platform for independent video creators to deliver their apps to connected TVs and mobile devices. Beachfront’s CEO and founder Frank Sinton told me that RISE is meant primarily for popular video creators who are becoming their own brands to reach audiences seamlessly across multiple devices.

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  • Comcast Defies Cord Cutting in Q3 ’15, Losing Just 48K Video Subscribers

    Comcast continued to defy the cord-cutting boogeyman in Q3 1’5, losing just 48K video subscribers, compared with a loss of 81K in Q3 ’14 and a loss of 127K in Q3 ’13. Comcast said it was the best third quarter for video subscribers in 9 years.

    Once again, Comcast attributed the improvement mainly to its X1 set-top box, which is now in one-quarter of video homes and accounted for 60% of video connects in Q3. On its earnings call, Comcast noted X1 subscribers have lower churn, use VOD and DVR more heavily and subscribe to more additional outlets than non-X1 subscribers. As a result of X1’s success, Comcast has increased its deployment, now installing 40K X1s per day, compared with 30K per day in Q2. Comcast also said it has deployed 1.5 million voice remotes which further enhance the X1 experience.

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  • Roku 4 Launches, With 4K Support Plus Updated Search and Discovery

    The busy month of connected TV device launches continues today, with Roku unveiling the Roku 4. The latest offering from Roku supports 4K, runs the new Roku 7 operating system, includes “Roku Feed,” which notifies users of new TV and movie releases and introduces Hotel and Dorm Connect for faster sign-in when on-the-go, among other features. The Roku 4 can be pre-ordered today for $129.99 with availability in October.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #292: TiVo BOLT and New Chromecasts Raise the Bar for Connected TV Devices

    I'm pleased to present the 292nd edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    Last month Colin and I discussed on our podcast how the connected TV device market is in flux, and this week’s introduction of the TiVO BOLT and the new Chromecast provided yet more evidence of this (not to mention the new Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV).

    Colin and I are both very impressed with the BOLT and its new features (after we use the review units we’ll have more to share). We agree that the new “SkipMode” feature - which allows viewers to skip an entire commercial break for a set of 20 TV networks during primetime - is the biggest news with BOLT.

    Beyond BOLT, Google also announced new versions and form-factors for its Chromecast device, which Colin and I have both been big fans since its initial release. Colin reviews Chromecast’s new capabilities, which at $35, makes it an appealing mobile device complement.

    Stepping back, both of continue to be struck by how all the innovation in connected TV devices is laying the groundwork for SVOD services (which are making investments in long-form programming) to thrive in the living room.

    (Note, we recorded before news broke that Amazon has banned Apple TV and Chromecast from its store, the latest twist in the connected TV device competition.)

    Listen in to learn more!

    Click here to listen to the podcast (22 minutes, 16 seconds)


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  • Across Devices and Content, Amazon Keeps Upping the Video Ante

    HBO thoroughly dominated at the Emmys last night, riding the big success of “Game of Thrones.” However, Amazon took home 5 Emmys (all for “Transparent”), just behind ABC (6), but ahead of CBS (4) and Netflix (4). The Emmys are a high-profile gauge of Amazon’s early success in video, but to get a fuller picture of the force that the company is poised to become, it’s important to look at the range of video initiatives Amazon is pursuing.

    The past month has been a whirlwind of news in video devices, content and how Amazon is differentiating through their integration. Last Thursday brought a flurry of announcements related to Amazon’s Fire tablets and Fire TV connected TV devices. The new Fire HD tablet was “designed from the ground up for entertainment,” with an 8” or 10.1” high-resolution display. Among the innovations Amazon touted was a brand new feature called “On Deck,” which will auto-download popular content from Prime Instant Videos to the Fire HD in a “shadow mode.”

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