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”…
The use of Periscope during Mayweather v Pacquiano raises interesting questions
Periscope is a streaming media app owned by Twitter. A consumer, with the Periscope app installed on their smart phone or tablet, can use their camera to film something and send a live stream of what they are filming over the web. The integration with Twitter means that a user’s Twitter followers are notified of the live stream, and can click through to it directly from Twitter.
On Saturday night, boxing fans in the live audience for the Mayweather vs Pacquiao fight in Las Vegas were using the app to send live streams of the event out over the web to their Twitter followers. Dick Costello – CEO of Twitter –rather foolishly declared Periscope the ‘winner’ of the fight, incurring the wrath of the rights holders for seemingly endorsing piracy. more “Down Periscope”…
It’s been a busy few days for Google Play, Google’s digital media store. First came the announcement last week that Google Play was to be added to the “channels” on Roku’s streaming boxes in the US, UK, Canada and Ireland. Shortly following this was the company’s Google+ post in which it revealed that Google Play’s movie service had been rolled out to nine more countries (many in Eastern Europe, and three – Iceland, Macedonia, and Bosnia – where they’ve got in ahead of iTunes). And now Decipher’s latest wave of Mediabug research has thrown up an interesting perspective on a service that’s not only finding its place but performing well in the UK TVOD (transactional video on demand) marketplace. more “TVOD: the crown is there for the taking”…
Decipher’s latest VOD Audit report is now available and with 84% of data collection automated, it provides the biggest and most robust picture of the UK video on demand landscape yet. It dissects the biggest 20 video on demand services in the UK giving an unrivalled overview of all VOD in the UK.
The new expanded report reveals that Apple’s iTunes service comprehensively trounces the competition by offering a total of 65,063 video assets, 193% larger than the next largest service Xbox Video, and 275% larger than the largest TV VOD service BT TV/YouView. The biggest growth overall in VOD was seen in Sky’s NowTV service which is 208% larger than in September’s Q3 report. Other providers who grew strongly include Xbox Video (87%), Sky TV (+35%) and Netflix (+26%).more “Decipher’s VOD Audit Q4 ’13: iTunes dominate total VOD size; but Sky lead catch-up”…
Decipher’s latest VOD Audit reveals YouView is now the largest catch-up TV provider in the UK, growing by 24% to offer 2,677 assets. This gives it the lead over Sky by 85 assets with the satellite provider’s catch-up service totaling 2,592 assets, reflecting 11% growth since June. Importantly however, Sky’s claims to having the largest catch-up service still have some grounds: Their service offers far more breadth, giving subscribers access to content from up to 32 channels compared to YouView’s 15.
Looking at total video on demand on services audited in this quarter (which excludes iTunes and Google Play until next quarter), the most on demand is available through Sony’s Playstation Store, accessed via the Playstation 3 games console; the Store offers access to over 24,100 episodes and movies. The Audit places Blinkbox in second (20,800 assets) with Microsoft’s Xbox Video in third place (20,400 assets). more “Decipher’s VOD Audit Q3 2013: YouView now provide more catch-up TV than Sky”…
Steve Hewlett published an article in the press last week that suggested Tony Hall’s big challenge was to sort out the BBC’s ‘digital’ strategy. Steve was onto something in latching onto ‘digital’ as a key area requiring attention, but we think he erred in thinking that ‘digital’ was somehow a separate problem to core strategy. This article makes the case that you can’t separate ‘digital’ from the rest of BBC strategy. More importantly, it makes the case that there is a fundamental flaw in the way new media, and iPlayer in particular, are organised and managed within the core of the BBC. We believe that this flaw is now having a significant impact on the arguably more important BBC broadcast brands. Three BBC announcements in the last month have highlighted the need for a fundamental re-think.
We are about to make our annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas on our clients’ behalf, so we thought we would create a shopping list of the things we are hoping to see and the announcements we expect. We would love to hear your views:
Smart TVs – In 2013, these really have to start living up to their ‘smart’ billing. A number of companies (including us) started to get under the skin of Smart TVs in 2012 and realised that they weren’t that smart (see our blog – here). The main issue was the poor quality of their operating systems. No one believes that Smart TVs will be running a proprietary OS in five years, so we need to see some light at the end of the OS tunnel. LG are showing their Google (ie Android for TV) sets, but will the rest follow? More interestingly, will Microsoft announce a Smart TV OS based on Windows 8 for third party OEMs? This could see the Xbox look and feel arrive on a TV screen. Samsung make laptops with Windows8 so why not TVs?
Few innovations in TVs history have caused as much divisiveness as 3D. Currently the darling of consumer electronics, manufacturers and retailers far and wide are actively demonstrating this revolutionary new form of TV. However consumers don’t seem to be buying it; either the idea or the technology itself.
So what explains the public’s apparent lack of affection for 3D? According to What Hi-Fi? magazine, 135,000 3D screens were sold in 2010, the first year the technology has really been available to British consumers. This seems respectable until you consider that nearly 10m TVs were sold in total and set sales were bumper last year due to the boost of the football World Cup in South Africa, always a driving point for sales of new sets. 3D sets totalled 1.35% of sales.
Samsung announced this morning that it’s launching a contest in the U.S. to find innovative new apps for its connected TVs and Blu-ray players. Samsung will give away $500,000 to developers who come up with the best new TV apps.
Now, I think that I have this one in the bag! I have come up with the perfect TV ‘app’ – called a ‘cluster’. It is based on a video file that automatically starts when the previous one is finished. This type of video file could allow the TV industry to create ‘clusters’ of video files that play out continuously, in a line for people who don’t like having to press stop and start all the time.
So Google and Sony have jointly announced the launch of Google TV – a range of set top boxes running a version of Google’s Android software. Google have also announced a range of other box launches in the US before Xmas. You may have seen the press notices about this, and we would like to offer an explanation and opinion on its importance.
First thing is to understand the background landscape. Broadly, there are three types of competitor in the TV market at the moment: the pay operators (like Sky and Virgin) who make their own boxes and software; the set top box manufacturers who are making Freeview and Freesat boxes with all sorts of fun stuff added over-the- top of broadcast (sometimes called the ‘over the top’ or OTT boxes); and the device manufacturers, like Sony, who are desperately trying to grab ownership of the TV experience in the home with a device centric strategy. Google TV has relevance for both the OTT and device manufacturers.