Magna Global’s Media Economy Report contends that over-the-top is the most dynamic segment of a rapidly expanding universe that now includes linear, non-linear and OTT viewing and, as such, is accelerating the redefinition of television.
The future looks like a mash-up of two modes of viewing — a bundle of channels that are streamed via the Internet to any and every screen.
Apple is rumored to update its Apple TV set-top box at a media event tomorrow. If it does, broadcasters should hope for an open SDK to let developers create apps for the platform. A TV version of the App Store could give local broadcasters a new channel in the over-the-top ecosystem that lets viewers catch up on news from the day and watch live newscasts.
The maker of indoor TV antennas wants to get into the over-the-top business and plans to release a new device early next year that includes a built-in antenna for over-the-air signals and software to access over-the-top content from services like Netflix and Hulu. “Cord-cutters watch over-the-air broadcasts, but most people want more than just that,” says Mohu CEO Mark Buff. “You need over-the-air coupled with a Netflix, Hulu or Amazon.”
It’s time to fire up the Apple TV rumor mill once again. Jean-François Mulé, founder of CableLabs in San Francisco, has been hired by Apple as an engineering director. And according to his LinkedIn page, that entails being, “challenged, inspired and part of something big.”
Intel executives want to launch a Web-based pay TV service by year’s ned, but are now looking for a strategic backer to help them fund and distribute the service. If they don’t find one soon, it could be the end for the project.
Without cable, Netflix doesn’t exist like it does today. If everyone one of the 100 million households in America with a pay-TV subscription dropped cable for Netflix, the company couldn’t support entertaining all of them for just $8 per month.
Nearly half of all TV homes today have the technology to take advantage of Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and other over-the-top video-on-demand platforms. TV networks are now challeneged to figure out how to exploit those platforms.
Don’t look for Showtime to offer an over-the-top alternative anytime soon. Speaking at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference in Beverly Hills on Wednesday, CBS CEO Leslie Moonves said: “We like the ecosystem as it is now.” Showtime is a unit of CBS.
What’s the real threat to broadcasters from over-the-top service’s like Aereo? Very little, according to a report from Barclays Capital. “While we tested the Aereo service and thought that it worked well,” writes Anthony DiClemente, media analyst at Barclays, “we think that the overall value proposition of cutting the cord is still not overly compelling.”
Not long ago, video creators looking for wide distribution on TV sets had few options beyond going door to door begging cable companies for what’s known as a hunting license. Now, however, there is another emerging option. Smart and connected TVs and other over-the-top options offer a chance to cut a deal with a Yahoo, Roku or Samsung and launch a content portal via an app or widget.
A new report suggests that TV watching via broadband is on the rise, while devices facilitating over-the-top viewing are gaining more traction. Parks Associates found that 31% of homes with broadband regularly watch TV online.
Media agency MagnaGlobal says over-the-top video services — many of which can be obtained for little or no cost — could grow to just under 10% of all U.S. homes in five years. By 2016, MagnaGlobal estimates there will be 9 million homes that have video services from so-called over-the-top TV companies — those that use digital, Internet, over the air or other means.
Nearly one-third of urban media consumers watch TV on non-traditional platforms — well over the average for the U.S. Media researcher Horowitz Associates says 31% of city consumers watch TV content on computer/laptops, mobile devices or tablets, or streamed from the Internet to the TV through so-called “over the top” devices, such as Apple TV, Xbox or blu-ray DVD players.
While a growing number of electronic devices are offering consumers the ability to bypass cable and satellite by delivering TV programming to their sets through broadband connections and Internet-connected TVs and other devices, TV stations aren’t rushing to get on board. Station groups say OTT services are simply too new and unknown. But if growth predictions are correct and if viewers continue to cut their cable cords, stations may have to turn to OTT outlets to insure their shows are reaching consumers.
YouTube wants to be the boob tube. Google is pitching YouTube not only as a popular Web destination, but as a content channel to have a place in the living room alongside TV networks like ABC, CBS and NBC. As Google targets the TV set, it is also making a play for TV-sized ad buys rather than smaller online budgets.