By Nigel Walley – @nwalley
The humble set top box – or STB – has come a long way since it was first introduced over 20 years ago. Originally just a device intended to decode broadcast signals, many in our industry dismiss the discussion of the STB as a ‘tech’ issue. However, the STB has emerged as one of the most important device classes in the consumer media landscape and once again is driving disruption and strategic change.
In the early years, viewers used content from pay boxes as a complement to their ‘normal’ TV viewing, just turning on the box when they wanted to access their pay channels. But over time set top boxes morphed a number of times into a new and much more influential driver of change in our industry. more “Breaking Out of The Box”
By Matt Walters – @matthew_walters – firstname.lastname@example.org
It has become a recurring theme among observers of the TV industry that young people have rejected broadcast television and “don’t watch TV any more”. The huge take up of alternative video formats and new devices is continually interpreted as evidence of this rejection. Recent analysis of viewing patterns and quantitative research from Ofcom and Thinkbox has shown that linear still plays a significant role in the viewing mix for young adults. These reports also show that over half of viewing amongst 12 – 18 year olds is now non-linear VoD and OTT. While the new data has reset our understanding of “what” is happening, what we haven’t known until now is “why”; what is motivating this shift, and will it remain in the future? more “Television and the 12-18s: the FutureTV Viewers Speak”
This article is a response to the Government’s request for suggestions for how the UK’s digital revolution can be taken to the next stage. In response to the request made by the Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey, we would like to suggest the creation of a new pan-European corporate entity specifically for tech start-ups. more “We Need Lions To Eat The Unicorns”
By Hamish McPharlin
New research from Decipher has shown that Pay TV subscriptions have not only increased since 2012, but SVOD subscriptions are growing faster amongst Pay homes – and in particular those with Top Tier packages – than any other.
Decipher’s latest Mediabug report has thrown up the intriguing possibility that the arrival of SVOD services in the market may have actually helped, not hindered, the Pay TV market. The bi-annual analysis of 3,000 UK consumers tracks adoption and use of SVOD in both Pay TV and Free TV homes. This latest report shows that the total Pay TV base has continued to grow from 61% to 69% of the UK population over the last four years (FIGURE 1). During this time, SVOD usage in Pay TV homes has grown from 10% to 45%. This indicates than there is a growing cohort of UK consumers that are increasingly comfortable with both Pay TV and SVOD.
more “New Mediabug report shows that SVOD is not cannibalising the UK Pay TV base”
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Decipher have released the latest wave of their bi-annual Mediabug research into consumer media use. Now in its fifth year, the bi-annual report is based on an online consumer survey of 3000 UK consumers, and reports on how new technology is impacting media consumption.
For the first time, this Mediabug Wave has shown the impact of new low-cost streaming devices like Amazon Fire Stick, Roku and Google Chromecast in driving OTT VOD use onto the big screen in UK television homes.
more “Streaming Devices Like Amazon Fire Are Now Driving OTT Use On The Big Screens In UK Television Homes”
We hear so many horror stories of fraud, malware and deceit on the internet that it can sometimes be easy to lose sight of the overwhelming global good the internet has delivered. Sometimes this is a huge good, but most often it is the cumulative impact of lots of little ‘moments of goodness’. We want to share a small unimportant story that makes this case.
In 2016 Decipher will be launching a spin-out tech company based on some IP we have developed in-house. We recently went through the increasingly difficult process of deciding what to call the new company. As most dot.com start-ups will tell you, in an increasingly globalised world there just aren’t many that words left that you can buy the rights for in all the relevant ways. more “Chasing Sparrows In Marathi”
By Matthew Walters – @matthew_walters – email@example.com
“This is the future, in many respects…we’re seeing more and more opportunities to reach consumers directly, and not through middlemen…this [DisneyLife] is a great example of our strategy to utilise technology to connect with consumers in more direct and compelling ways, something that only Disney can do.”
Bob Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive, The Walt Disney Company
Christmas is almost upon us, and it seems apt as 25th December gets ever closer to be discussing the company behind some of the festive season’s most well-known films – think Santa’s Workshop (if you haven’t seen it, you must), think Tim Allen in The Santa Clause, and think Michael Caine’s Ebenezer Scrooge in The Muppet Christmas Carol. Many years and many miles from the streets of Dickensian London, it was on a fourth-quarter call with investors last month that Bob Iger – the man atop the Disney empire – fielded questions from analysts on two issues of strategic importance to Disney, one current and one future. more “Disney, Broadcasters and Direct-to-Consumer: A Whole New World?”
6th January 2016: our original blog, published on 29th November last year, has been revised to incorporate new research data we have received. We are pleased to include this in relation to discussion of the 1st generation backwards EPGs below.
At the launch of the new SkyQ system recently, there was one feature (or lack of it) which struck us odd. The proposed system currently doesn’t have a backwards EPG, or any deep integration with catch-up from linear broadcast. When we asked why, we were told that ‘our consumer research shows that only a small number of people use them to access catch-up’. We would make three points:
– You can’t disadvantage any users, however small the user base
– Current backwards EPGs aren’t good enough to use as a research benchmark
– It sounds like the research was asking the wrong question more “Misunderstanding The Backwards EPG”
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New figures from Decipher’s bi-annual media consumption report Mediabug have shown that half of those who have purchased a TV show or film on their set top box have never purchased a digital TV show or film before.
Mediabug Wave 7, released today, reports that to date 24% of the UK online population have purchased a digital copy of a TV show or film; a practice known as EST (‘electronic sell through’). Most of these buyers have purchased via an online store such as iTunes, Google Play, or Amazon Instant. However, the new option to purchase via your TV set top box from Sky and BT seems to be attracting new consumers to digital buying. To date, 8% of the UK online population have purchased via their set top box, but half of this group (4%) had never purchased EST before. more “Digital Purchase on Set Top Box Unearths New Audiences – says Decipher’s latest Mediabug Report”
Those with one eye on Los Angeles last night will have seen Amazon and Netflix put in a strong performance at the Emmy Awards, with programming from their respective streaming services winning a total of nine awards between them from a joint total of 46 nominations. Amazon’s Transparent was the evening’s big winner.
It left us all here at Decipher intrigued as to the impact Netflix is having upon the UK television market, and we dived into the upcoming Wave 7 of our Mediabug survey to find out. more “Amazon and Netflix: a UK snapshot”