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  • VideoNuze Podcast #300: Disney Launches SVOD Service in UK; Amazon Video Takes Flight With JetBlue

    I'm pleased to present the 300th edition (wow!) of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.

    First up this week we discuss Disney’s newly launched “DisneyLife” SVOD service in the U.K. In his post on the launch, Colin noted that Disney CEO Bob Iger said DisneyLife lets the company “reach consumers directly and not through middlemen.” That’s a huge departure from the traditional pay-TV model, and more aligned with Apple CEO Tim Cook’s vision of “TV as an app.” Colin sees broad implications of DisneyLife, though I think expanding it to other geographies, given rights issues, will be difficult in the short-term.

    We then dig into some good news for JetBlue fliers - unlimited Amazon Prime video streaming will now be available on 150 JetBlue airplanes per an announcement from the companies this week. If it works well, this would be a winning deal for everyone involved - Amazon, JetBlue and passengers. We explain why and what could follow.

    Listen now to learn more and happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

    Click here to listen to the podcast (22 minutes, 4 seconds)

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    The VideoNuze podcast is also available in iTunes...subscribe today!

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  • VideoNuze-TDG Podcast #148 - Microsoft Hires CBS Vet; TWC Open to Apple TV; In-Flight WiFi and VOD

    Colin Dixon, senior partner at The Diffusion Group and I are back for the 148th edition of the VideoNuze-TDG podcast.

    First up this week we discuss Microsoft hiring former CBS Entertainment executive Nancy Tellem to develop original content for the Xbox platform and other devices. Colin thinks it's a odd choice because of the apparent mismatch between the type of programming CBS has excelled at vs. the type of programming that will likely resonate with Xbox owners. In particular, Colin notes that 40% of Xbox owners are age 18-24, whereas Nielsen has found that CBS's average viewer's age is 55. Clearly Microsoft is betting that Ms. Tellem can extend her significant programming skills to different formats, audiences and devices.

    Speaking of confusing, we then turn our attention to comments that Time Warner Cable's COO Rob Marcus made this week in reference to the company potentially working with Apple on a set-top box. On the one hand he said that TWC is "open to giving up control of the user experience" to new devices, but on the other, that this does not mean it is willing "to give up the customer relationship." Both Colin and I find the two objectives at odds with one another, particularly when introducing a UI powerhouse like Apple into the living room. As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, if cable operators partner with Apple and its set-top, it will be akin to allowing the fox into the henhouse. We know how that story ended.

    Lastly, as frequent flyers, both of us were excited to read about Delta's new in-flight VOD plans, and JetBlue's forthcoming high-speed WiFI rollout. We discuss implications briefly.

    Listen in to learn more!

    Click here to listen to the podcast (20 minutes, 20 seconds)

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    The VideoNuze-TDG Report podcast is available in iTunes...subscribe today!

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  • 5 Items of Interest for the Week of Oct. 11th

    Continuing VideoNuze's Friday feature of highlighting 5-6 interesting online/mobile video industry stories that we weren't able to cover this week. Read them now or take them with you this weekend!

    JetBlue Unvails Ads Created By Mullen
    Take a moment to head over to YouTube today where JetBlue has bought out the top-of-page expanding banner for a hilarious new ad campaign, "You Above All," featuring a series of reality-style videos of New Yorkers in situations that mock the JetBlue competitors' service. The clever JetBlue campaign follows the head-turning Sylvester Stallone YouTube ad for "The Expendables" from a couple months ago and underscores the ascendance of YouTube as the #1 piece of online real estate for break-the-mold video campaigns for high-profile brands. Google is capitalizing on YouTube's appeal by featuring it prominently in its current "Watch This Space" ad campaign promoting the value of display advertising.

    Google TV Guns for Cable Deals
    And speaking of Google, with the recent introduction of Google TV, the company is reaching out to cable operators to ink integration deals similar to what it showcased with satellite operator Dish TV last week. Google TV offers tantalizing potential, particularly to smaller operators, to add Internet elements to their core video service, helping better compete with over-the-top entrants like Netflix. Conversely, as we saw this week with the funding/public launch of BNI Video (and in a series of separate product announcements coming next week), technology vendors are lining up to offer cable operators the ability to deliver their own Internet experiences. It's a very confusing time for cable operators, who must figure out whether to go it alone and invest heavily, or partner with a tech giant like Google.

    comScore Releases September 2010 U.S. Online Video Rankings
    comScore's video rankings for September yielded no big surprises, as Google/YouTube continued to be the dominant online video provider and Yahoo narrowly retook the #2 spot from Facebook. comScore changed the way it publicly reports its data this past June which has made it a little harder on independent analysts like me to show trending data as I used to do. Nonetheless, I'm hoping to have some new trending charts to share soon. Predicts Best Quarter Yet for Web Creators
    More encouraging news on the online video ad front, as video platform/distributor said this week that Q4 '10 is on track to be its best quarter ever. Blip has been a very important player in bringing independent web series to market and its ability to monetize is a key driver of sustainability for many fledgling creators. Blip's news synchs with overall online video ad momentum in first half '10.

    Introducing the JW Player for Flash and HTML5
    Last month I wrote about how the open source JW Player is receiving 15K downloads per day. This week version 5.3 of the JW Player was released which integrates Flash and HTML5 into a single video player, using a unified JavaScript API. What that means is that anyone embedding the new player can seamlessly deliver either Flash or HTML5 video with the browser auto-detecting which playback mode to use. Since browsers and devices are still quite heterogeneous in what formats they support, initiatives like this help reduce friction in publishing and user experience.

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  • JetBlue Uses Customer Video to Tell Its Story Well

    Long-time VideoNuze readers know I'm continuously following how brands are reinventing the way they communicate with customers and prospects through the use of online video. The latest example to hit my radar is JetBlue, which has just launched a video-rich area of their web site called "Experience JetBlue." As this article notes, JetBlue has recognized that customer testimonials about tangible attributes (e.g. more leg room, on-board TV, etc.) provided in an authentic, non-interruptive way, resonate well. Beyond the four current testimonials, there is also a ton of background video in the mini-site.

    Coincidentally, I just flew JetBlue back and forth from Boston to the west coast this week. One other thing I'd say about why this customer testimonial/online video approach works is that they're true and accurate, which speaks to the opportunity and risk of this approach. When real people are featured, they better be telling the truth, or trust in the brand will be seriously damaged. But if they are, then there's a lot of upside. The success of user-review sites like TripAdvisor, Yelp and others shows that people really do care what other people have to say. Video just enhances things further. As a result, I expect we'll see more brands go this route.

    What do you think? Post a comment now (no sign-in required).
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