New app provides channel guide and DVR capabilities for online video
Veoh Networks Inc. has launched the beta version of VeohTV, an application with a single interface that acts as a video browser and DVR for finding, viewing and managing online video. The downloadable software app "combines the breadth of the Internet with the simplicity of traditional TV," the company said.
"Unlike Joost, which is a closed system with content from a limited number of sources, VeohTV supports open Internet standards and has access to virtually all of the video content on the Internet, on-demand," said Dmitry Shapiro, CEO of Veoh.
With Veoh's cable-like channel guide, viewers can browse by channel or search by keywords for videos, and then they can either stream the videos directly from the host site or download permitted videos and watch them later. Viewers can also connect their computer to a TV and watch the videos in their living room.
The video content can be from major television networks, such as Fox and CBS, or it can be independently produced content available on sites such as YouTube, Google Video and MySpace.
Veoh Networks' investors include Shelter Capital Partners, Spark Capital, Goldman Sachs, Michael Eisner's Tornante Company and Time Warner Inc.
The company's portfolio also includes Veoh.com, a video hosting and sharing site with more than 70,000 content publishers—from Paramount Pictures and Lions Gate to PBS and National Lampoon—that attracts more than 12 million unique users per month.
VeohTV beta will initially be limited, but viewers can register for an invitation to download the free software app here.
—Traci Patterson, Web/News Editor - CED, Editor - xOD Capsule
Yahoo's CEO steps down, News Corp. rumors fly
On June 18, Yahoo! Inc.'s CEO, Terry Semel, resigned. The company's board of directors appointed Jerry Yang, co-founder of Yahoo!, to the position. Susan Decker, the former EVP, was appointed president.
Yahoo's new CEO,
Yahoo!'s rival, Google Inc., has dominated the Internet advertising space as of late. Semel's resignation was a relief to some board members and investors who were angry with Yahoo!'s lack of acquisitions in the space—or at the lack of Yahoo!'s acquisition—and concerned with the company's sagging stock. But there is skepticism about whether Yang is the freshest choice because he's been with the company since its inception.
Three days after being named CEO, Yang led Yahoo's acquisition of Rivals.com, a Web site that provides college sports coverage. And on Sunday, the company announced that it is combining its Search and Display advertising sales teams in the U.S. And, according to The Times in London, News Corp. has discussed swapping MySpace with Yahoo! in return for a 30 percent stake in the enlarged group (story here).
VOD to pass up PPV by 2010
In the U.S. TV distribution market, the largest surge in end-user spending over the next few years will come from the VOD segment, according to a new study from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC).
The company expects the VOD market to increase by a 19.5 percent compound annual growth rate to $4.2 billion by 2011. Pay-per-view's (PPV) market share was $1 billion larger than VOD's last year, but PWC expects VOD to surpass PPV in 2010, at $3.7 billion versus PPV's $3.2 billion.
And cable companies will continue to grow in the VOD space, at a 14.1 percent rate, and remain the dominant players, but telcos will expand in the segment, growing at a 62.7 percent rate, gaining some market share.
C-Cor, Harmonic collaborate on SDV-capable system
C-Cor and Harmonic Inc. are combining the latter's compression and Edge QAM technology with the former's on-demand and advertising management products to create an integrated system capable of switched digital video (SDV).
Components of the solution include C-Cor's nABLE Session and Resource Manager and Harmonic's NSG 9000 universal eQAM and ProStream 1000 stream processing platform with Mentor re-encoding technology.
SA's USRM software optimizes SDV
Scientific Atlanta said its Universal Session and Resource Manager (USRM), a previously announced standalone product, is now available as a software download for Cisco's Content Delivery System (CDS) and SA's SDV servers.
The USRM extends and distributes management of the video and data network control plane all the way to the edge. It now has the ability to integrate modules such as VOD and SDV, delivering more efficient QAM sharing, improved addressable advertising and policy-based bandwidth assignment across services.
Concurrent releases new MediaHawk 4500 software
Concurrent has unleashed new software for its MediaHawk 4500 line of servers that will provide additional support for ISA (Time Warner Cable's standard), NGOD (Comcast's standard) and Concurrent back offices.
The software supports the MediaCache 1000—Concurrent's first product in a line of non-volatile, flash memory storage products for the streaming of VOD content—and Regional File Server functionality. Stream density has improved to 1,920 streams at 3.75 Mbps per 2RU server; the previous MediaHawk 4500 release supported only 1,600 streams.
The best feature, according to Michael Pasquinilli, Concurrent's VP of Engineering, is that an operator can have multiple MediaHawk 4500s sharing a common output to a GigE switch. Any one of the servers can be removed, or taken offline, and the other servers will pick up the load, with no service interruption. And if an additional server is added, it will slowly begin to share streams with the other servers.
Second major auditor subscribes to TiVo's TV ratings service
Media Performance Monitor America (MPMA) has begun subscribing to TiVo's new Stop//Watch TV ratings service, which offers a second-by-second analysis of advertising exposure.
Media IQ also recently subscribed to TiVo's service, which is based on a sample of 20,000 households. The data provides information on how and when subs are viewing live TV, as well as playback, and whether or not they fast forward through commercials.
Buckeye deploys Mixed Signals' Sentry
Mixed Signals Inc.'s Sentry Digital Content Monitor has been deployed by Buckeye CableSystem, the company's first NCTC customer.
The Sentry examines the network's overall transport stream behavior and analyzes signal and stream data patterns, delivering actionable alerts when necessary.
The technology enables Buckeye to verify the continuity and quality of digital video and audio assets, as well as the operability of data-centric apps, digital ad insertion, captioning and parental controls. The complexity of digital video distribution is increasing, thanks to services such as HD, VOD, iTV, SDV and targeted advertising.
Terayon introduces CherryPicker's big brother
Terayon Communication Systems Inc. has added a bigger, faster member to its family of CherryPicker Application Platform (CAP) digital video processors. The CAP-1000 is, Terayon believes, the first platform to offer a software application for the rate shaping of real-time, broadcast-quality MPEG-4 AVC SD and HD streams.
The CAP-1000 also performs grooming, dejittering and localized ad insertion to support apps that include SDV, VOD playlist advertising and bulk encryption. As with the previous CherryPicker, the DM 6400, users activate apps on the CAP-1000 by purchasing software license keys.
YouTube launching in 9 countries
YouTube is going international, launching local versions of its UGC site in Brazil, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and the U.K.
Each site is fully translated with local homepages and search functions, and eventually the sites will house country-specific video rankings and comments, as well as video, channel, categories and community sections, the company said.
• Cox widens VOD with Harmonic's eQAM
Cox Communications has expanded its VOD service in Kansas and Arkansas with Harmonic Inc.'s NSG Edge QAM. Harmonic's eQAMs—which provide IP to QAM RF conversion, multiplexing, scrambling, and program filtering and routing—power more than 250,000 QAMs, representing more than two million video streams, the company said.
• WOW chooses Motorola's video server for VOD service
Motorola Inc.'s B-1 Video Server has been selected by WideOpenWest (WOW) for the delivery of its VOD service in Detroit, Chicago, and Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio.
• mPhase subsidiary to create targeted ads
mPhase Technologies formed a new subsidiary that will provide targeted advertising services for IPTV providers. The new company, Granita Media, will offer ads matched to the demographics of the viewers using technology developed by mPhase.
• MySpace housing classic TV shows
News Corp.'s MySpace and Sony Pictures Television are partnering for The Minisode Network, a classic TV channel on the UGC site that features abbreviated versions of classics such as "Charlie's Angels" and "The Facts of Life." Fifteen condensed shows from Sony TV's library are available on MySpace, which has recently cut licensing deals with The New York Times and Reuters.
• ESPN.com adds arcade section
ESPN.com has launched the ESPN Arcade. The site, a collaboration with Skyworks, will offer more than 40 games, including sports games, card and puzzle games, game room titles, driving games and multiplayer games.
• Tag Networks gets Transparent
Under a joint agreement, Transparent Technologies Inc. (TTi) will provide operational support services for Tag Networks' deployments of TV games on-demand. TTi's services will include technical support, system monitoring, system integration, deployment and lab environment testing.
• Verizon executive says HD VOD is in the works, reported by Reuters.
• Complete coverage of the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, by Advertising Age.
• Microsoft launches Chinese media venture, according to the Associated Press.