Posts for 'DVR'

  • YouTube TV’s New 4K Plus Brings Valuable Offline Viewing Feature

    Yesterday YouTube TV announced a new add-on feature called 4K Plus, which includes the ability to download recorded DVR programming to mobile devices for subsequent offline viewing. Diehard VideoNuze readers know that since October, 2012, when I wrote “TiVo Stream’s Downloading Feature is a Bona Fide Killer App” I have been an unabashed proponent of downloading/offline viewing.

    As I wrote then, downloading offers multiple benefits to users, and to the services offering the feature. Though mobile connectivity is far better today than 9 years ago, there are still plenty of times when a cost-effective, high-quality Internet connection isn’t available (e.g. planes, trains, rural driving, etc.). At those moments, if you want to watch video, you’re out of luck. Downloading enables viewers to be untethered from the Internet and yet still have access to their DVR library.

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  • Survey: 23% of U.S. Adults Now Stream Netflix Daily, Quadrupling Since 2011

    More data today showing the ascendance of Netflix into Americans’ lives. Leichtman Research Group’s 15th annual On-Demand TV survey found that 23% of U.S. adults now stream Netflix on a daily basis, nearly quadruple the 6% who did back in 2011. 81% of Netflix users say they watch Netflix on a TV set. And 54% of adults said they have Netflix, vs. 53% having a DVR, the first time the penetration lines have crossed (in 2011, 44% had a DVR and 28% had Netflix).

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  • TiVo BOLT+ Unveiled, With 6 Tuners and 3 TB of Storage

    TiVo has announced its latest DVR, the 4K BOLT+, which includes 6 tuners and 3 GB of   storage, comparable to the existing Roamio Pro. The BOLT+ follows the introduction of the original 4K BOLT one year ago, which included 4 tuners and two sizes, 500 GB and 1 TB. Importantly the original BOLT only came in white, while the new BOLT+ comes in black, which will make it fit more elegantly into existing entertainment centers. The BOLT+ retains the BOLT’s sleek, unconventional curved design.

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  • TiVo Introduces BOLT, Making Ad-Skipping Even Easier

    TiVo has introduced its latest product, the BOLT, with key features including faster ad-skipping, 4K support, an accelerated viewing mode and a new form factor which includes a unique curved design. TiVo is retailing the 500GB version for $300 and a 1 TB version for $400, both of which include a year of service (equal to $180).

    The most intriguing feature of the BOLT is the new “SkipMode,” which allows one-button fast-forwarding through a recorded program’s entire ad pod. This means that rather than manually fast-forwarding through the ads and overshooting or undershooting to get to the point where the program resumes, the viewer can simply use SkipMode to seamlessly continue viewing (note SkipMode won’t be available for all programs).

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  • Sling TV: Old School Linear TV in New Online Wrapper Makes Success Unlikely

    Sling TV has received an enormous amount of attention since being announced last month at CES. Some hyper-enthusiastic observers have heralded Sling TV as a sign that traditional pay-TV is on the verge of crumbling. But, having now spent some time with Sling TV, I think a more accurate assessment of Sling TV is that it is fundamentally an old school linear TV service, modestly freshened up with a new online wrapper. In its current form, Sling TV looks very unlikely to gain much traction.

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  • Study: 70% of TV Viewers Now Consider Themselves Binge-Viewers

    The latest evidence supporting the craze around binge-viewing was released by consultancy Miner & Co., finding that 70% of U.S. TV viewers now consider themselves binge-viewers. Miner defined binge-viewing as watching 3 or more episodes in a single session. For most, binge-viewing is still a monthly activity (90%), followed by weekly (63%) and daily (17%).

    The survey found that 55% of binge-viewers and 61% of frequent binge-viewers were millennials. It also defined three categories of binge-viewers: "Streamers" (35%) who use services like Netflix/Hulu Plus/Amazon; "Marathoners" (18%) who watch TV marathons and "DVRers" (16%) who mostly binge-view using their DVR.

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  • TiVo: 10 Broadcast TV Programs Missed Out On $88 Million in Ad Revenue Due to C3 Limitations

    TiVo Research has released data indicating that time-shifting by viewers of 10 broadcast TV primetime programs to between 4-7 days following their initial airing resulted in approximately $88 million in total lost ad revenue by their respective networks (see chart below).

    For these 10 programs, TiVo found that the 4-7 day period increased ratings between 4.1% ("American Idol") to 10.9% ("Modern Family"). Because "American Idol" had the highest average number of ads per episode (61), it had the highest level of lost ad revenue in the 4-7 day period for the full season ($14.4 million). Conversely, "The Good Wife," which had an average of 29 ads per episode, but had the second-lowest 4-7 day ratings increase, had the  lowest level of lost ad revenue ($3.6 million).

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  • TiVo to Bring Out-of-Home Streaming With New Roamio DVRs

    TiVo has introduced its new line of DVRs dubbed "Roamio," and among other new features, the highlight is out-of-home streaming (note the caveats below). Out-home-streaming means that users with a Roamio DVR will be able to access their stored content on iOS devices (and Android at some point too), effectively unlocking content from the DVR itself.

    Out-of-home streaming extends in-home streaming and downloading that have been available via the TiVo Stream device. I've been using Stream since last year and is one of my favorite devices, enabling me to download content before making a trip and then watch when not connected, a great benefit. The 2 higher-end Roamios (Plus and Pro) have TiVo Stream built in, while the base model does not.

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  • VideoNuze Podcast #186 - 4K TV & HEVC Rollouts; DVR vs. SVOD; Curved TVs

    I'm pleased to present the 186th edition of the VideoNuze weekly podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia. Colin attended a CDN conference earlier this week first shares observations on the potential long-term rollout of 4K TV and HEVC, along with the deployment of Netflix's Open Connect CDN based on conversations with Netflix and Time Warner Cable.

    Next we turn to data from NPD earlier this week indicating that for watching TV shows, DVR usage is more than twice as popular as SVOD services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon, which I wrote about earlier this week. Colin caveats the data, noting that in SVOD-specific homes he believes the usage is stronger than NPD suggests.

    Lastly we touch on news that Samsung will be selling curved TVs, for $13K apiece. Colin and I are skeptics, to say the least.

    Listen in to learn more!

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  • Watching TV Shows on DVR is More Than Twice as Popular as SVOD

    SVOD services like Netflix, Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime Instant Video are all the all the rage these days and a core part of their popularity is their ever-expanding library of TV series. No question, binge-viewing a TV season or series on an SVOD service is now one of life's little pleasures.

    In SVOD's wake, one technology that always seems to get overshadowed is the DVR. But, according to data from NPD, watching TV shows on DVRs is actually more than twice as popular as watching them on SVOD services like Netflix. When asked how they watched TV shows in Q1 '13, viewers cited DVR/TiVo 42%, and SVOD 16%. As seen in the chart below, DVR/TiVo was in third place, after linear viewing on the TV network itself.

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  • Hitting `Delete`: Motorola Survey Says Lots of DVR Video Never Gets to the Screen

    As DVR penetration and usage have steadily climbed, it has seemed inevitable that one day internal disks wouldn’t be able to keep up with the demand to store more and more video. Now, judging from Motorola Mobility’s latest Media Engagement Barometer, that day might be here.

    The study out today shows that even though one-third of U.S. TV viewing involves recorded programs, 41% of the video saved to DVRs never gets watched. Often, that’s because people have to delete stored programs to make room for new ones. 55% of U.S. DVR users said they’ve had to kill off recorded shows to add capacity for new programs, and 81% (women more so than men) said they’ve been frustrated over having to do so.

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  • TiVo Stream's Downloading Feature is a Bona Fide Killer App

    "Killer app" is surely one of the most cliche terms in technology and one I try hard to avoid using. But today I'm making an exception because, in my opinion, the new TiVo Stream device actually has a bona fide killer app: the ability to wirelessly download recorded programs from a TiVo Premiere DVR to an iOS device for offline, high-quality playback. I've been using Stream mainly for this purpose for the past month and have absolutely fallen in love with the device.

    The ability to download recorded programs is huge for several reasons. First and foremost, often when out of the home, it just isn't possible to stream video. A high-quality WiFi network may not be available (for instance, when flying). And even if it is, it may be over-shared, lacking necessary capacity for streaming. Wireless carrier 3G aircards similarly lack capacity, and with 4G aircards, data usage plan caps quickly kick in, making streaming an expensive proposition.

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  • VideoNuze-TDG Podcast #152 - Boxee TV and the Evolving DVR Landscape

    Colin Dixon, senior partner at The Diffusion Group and I are back for the 152nd edition of the VideoNuze-TDG podcast. This week Colin and I first share our reactions to the launch of Boxee TV earlier this week. Colin is struck by Boxee TV's unlimited video recording feature, the first that either of us have seen. Colin also points out potential challenges with upstream bandwidth that could be a challenge for Boxee TV recording programs at HD quality. Overall though, Colin likes Boxee TV's direction and believes it's a better strategy for the company than the original Boxee Box.

    As I wrote earlier this week, I see Boxee TV in the context of innovation happening with broadcast TV and DVR. Along with Simple.TV and Aereo, consumers are gaining more control of their broadcast TV experience. In addition, they're all overlapping to an extent with Hulu and Hulu Plus which already offer unprecedented access to broadcast TV programs. It's still too early to tell which of these approaches will succeed, but Colin and I share our predictions.

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  • What Is Up With All the Innovation Around Broadcast TV and DVR?

    Odd as it may seem on the surface, the intersection of broadcast TV and the DVR has become a hotbed of innovation. Yesterday brought the latest player in this space, Boxee TV, which followed news earlier this week that Simple.TV has begun shipping, which itself followed the launch earlier this year of Aereo.

    While each has its own unique approach, they all fundamentally provide viewers more flexibility to record and play back broadcast TV programs by leveraging over-the-top, broadband delivery, while seeking to undercut the price of a monthly subscription to pay-TV. They are all segmenting the consumer market, pursuing a cohort of "cord-cutters" and "cord-nevers" open to alternatives to pricey multichannel TV bundles.

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  • VideoNuze-TDG Podcast #150 - How On-Demand Viewing is Disrupting TV Viewership and Advertising

    Colin Dixon, senior partner at The Diffusion Group and I are back for the 150th (whoohoo!) edition of the weekly VideoNuze-TDG podcast. This week Colin and I talk about how on-demand viewing - through both DVRs and online - is changing the landscape for TV networks and advertisers.

    First up, Colin shares some eye-opening numbers from the start of this year's TV season, as reported by the NY Times. Certain shows like NBC's "Revolution" and "The New Normal" plus CBS's "Hawaii Five-o" gained a whopping 40% more viewers due to DVR-based viewing in the 3 days following their premieres. This new viewing dynamic, particularly among the coveted 18-49 cohort, underscores the new reality of on-demand's importance in assessing a show's potential. Premiere night alone is no longer determinative (if it ever was!).

    On-demand viewing is also a conundrum for advertisers and agencies when creating media plans. And that's why this week's announcement by Nielsen of its Cross-Platform Campaign Ratings solution is a big step forward in monetizing audiences across screens. Online has emerged alongside DVRs as a legitimate viewing alternative, and advertisers need to harness its potential. Colin and I discuss how Cross-Platform helps create a "common currency" measurement with TV, which will appeal to TV ad buyers, while helping content providers better value their online ad inventory. It's a complicated topic, but as Colin notes, the shift from "broadcaster-centric to consumer-centric" is causing huge ripple effects in the ecosystem.

    Listen in to learn more!

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  • Motorola Showcases Benefits of nDVR [VIDEO]

    At the recent Cable Show, John Holobinko, VP of Strategy for the Network Infrastructure Group of Motorola Mobility, stopped by for a brief video interview. We primarily discuss "nDVR" which Motorola was demonstrating at the show. nDVR allows viewers to record programs and store them in the network/cloud, vs. locally on their own DVRs. The obvious benefit to the viewer is not having to worry about limited storage capacity. In addition, as John explains, nDVR also opens up out-of-home, multi-device on-demand viewing. It also offers operational improvements for the pay-TV operator and new ad opportunities for content providers. Watch the interview below (6 minutes, 6 seconds).

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  • Auto Hop is Charlie Ergen's Way of Saying the TV Ad Model is Irreparably Broken

    Since I read Dish Network's press release last month announcing its new Auto Hop feature, I've been scratching my head, wondering (like many others), what Dish's cryptic CEO Charlie Ergen was really thinking about with the move. Auto Hop is such a blatant poke in the eye to broadcasters' ad-based business model that Ergen surely knew it would evoke a legal and business response - as it has.

    Therefore, I was hoping an article in last Friday's WSJ, based on the first interviews with Ergen about Auto Hop, would clarify his motivations. While some have called Auto Hop a negotiation tactic with broadcasters over retransmission consent fees (which, in part it is), rather, I think Ergen's larger message with Auto Hop is that the traditional TV ad model is irreparably broken and it's urgent the industry figure out what's next. Not doing so risks the ultimate unraveling of the great American broadcast TV industry.

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  • TiVo's New iPad Video Downloader is a Winner for On the Go Viewing [VIDEO]

    Streaming video is awesome, but of course it requires you to have a robust broadband connection. Once you're outside your home or business, that's an iffy proposition. WiFi hotspots aren't always available, and even when they are, they're often over-shared so connection quality is too low for video. Wireless 3G or 4G cards are better, but their relatively low data caps seriously crimps viewing. And if you're on a plane, forget streaming entirely, Gogo doesn't cut it at all.

    These real-world mobile limitations mean downloading video in advance, rather than streaming it, is the key to on the go viewing. This has been one of the value props of iTunes, Amazon and other services. But the reality is that lots of great content is already sitting on your DVR (and if you're like me, 30K feet is when I most often actually have time to watch any of it). Further, you've already paid a lot of great content with your pay-TV subscription. The problem is that DVR video has been pretty much locked in your home, without an easy way to take it with you. All of above problems are solved with TiVo's new "Stream" companion device, which TiVo announced last week.

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  • PlayLater Brings DVR Capability to the Online Video World

    Ever find yourself in a situation where you want to watch online video, but you can't actually get online or can only get a sub-par connection? In these cases, it would have been convenient to pre-record the videos you want and watch them at your convenience, as is the norm with DVRs. This is the simple, but highly compelling use case that PlayLater, a new product being released in closed beta today, addresses.

    With PlayLater, you first download the client software (PC-only for now) and are then presented with an interface where you can search and select your desired programs from a variety of the most-popular free and paid online video sources (e.g. Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, etc.). I gave PlayLater a try and was able to easily find and record the latest episode of "Glee" on Hulu. Because PlayLater is recording, not downloading, the program, it requires as much time as the duration of the program and episode - just like using a DVR with TV, and of course the PC must be on while recording.

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  • DVR Capability Would Make Online Video Even More Compelling

    The BBC's announcement late last week of its new "Series Record" feature, which enables iPlayer users to subscribe to download future episodes of specific TV programs just as they might do with a DVR, caught my attention because it adds compelling new value to the current online video streaming model. That's because, as valuable as it is to have premium content available online, it still requires the user to actually be online and have a robust broadband connection (and soon enough to also be adhering to their ISP's usage cap).

    For many, meeting these criteria isn't a problem. However, there are lots of others, particularly those of us who travel frequently, for whom these streaming prerequisites block many potential viewing opportunities (try streaming over a MiFi card or on a hotel's wireless network or on an airplane!). As a result, if we want to watch an episode of our favorite network TV program freely available online, or something from the Netflix streaming or Hulu Plus catalog, the only option is likely to have to pay to download it from iTunes or Amazon or another provider.

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