Ray Milius and his team are responsible for engineering matters at Starz. Starz is not among the largest programmers, but it frequently is among the first programmers to adopt new technologies. Recently, Ray and his team got Starz into TV Everywhere with its Encore and MoviePlex On Demand And Play services.
Years after Netflix, smartphones and tablets all hit the scene, even those service providers capable of multi-screen delivery continue to struggle with the multi-screen phenomenon. That’s because even as service providers respond to viewers’ increasing appetite for video on screens other than the TV, consumers’ multi-screen behavior continues to evolve.
The once heavily tech-driven business model of small Tier 2 and Tier 3 cable and broadband service providers is morphing into a kaleidoscope of moving, interchangeable parts. Smaller operators whose subscriber counts number in the four- and five-figure range are fiddling with and tweaking their business models like never before.
The multi-screen transformation has taken the video world by storm. Customers now expect the same video services they receive on their set-top box on their video-capable devices. Adoption of multi-screen services is occurring across the spectrum, running the gamut of service providers, content providers and enterprises.
John Malone’s Liberty Global is in the process of cooking up a deal to buy Virgin Media. Virgin Media’s price tag could be in the range of $24 billion, while its market capitalization stands at $10.4 billion. Including debt, its enterprise value is around $19.4 billion.
Authenticated subscribers of Time Warner Cable and DirecTV can now catch all of the Los Angeles Lakers games on their iOS devices, home computers, and Android tablets and phones. Time Warner Cable has made its TWC SportsNet and TWC Deportes video content available for Internet and mobile viewing.
Mexican telephony and broadband provider Axtel just fired up an IPTV. Ericsson said it is providing managed services, consulting and systems integration for the service. The initial launch is in Mexico's three largest cities: Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey.
DirecTV will introduce ad insertion for its DirecTV Everywhere service later this year, using technology from FreeWheel, in which DirecTV has also just invested. FreeWheel raised $16 million and then another $12 million in two previous rounds of funding.
On a fourth-quarter and year-end earnings conference call, Time Warner Cable President and COO Rob Marcus outlined some of the cable operator’s key initiatives for this year, which included the rollout of a cloud-based user interface on IP set-top boxes and gateways.
United Kingdom-based ThinkAnalytics continues to make inroads into the United States. To wit: ThinkAnalytics’ recommendation engine is the first and only one to date to license the Comcast Reference Design Kit (RDK) software stack. Vendors have been lining up in droves to take part in Comcast’s RDK efforts.
It’s a fragmentized ecosystem when it comes to enabling video content across various devices and browsers, but Comcast’s thePlatform hopes to build a more unified front with an updated video player service that puts HTML5 in the leadoff position.
Cablevision has added video from Watch Disney Channel, Watch Disney XD and Watch Disney Junior for authenticated customers of its Optimum TV to Go service. Cablevision customers who receive the networks as part of their monthly video service can now stream these channels live or view popular shows in on-demand.
Cable One has added more TV Everywhere content via an expanded agreement with Synacor, and it also announced a new 30-day money-back satisfaction guarantee program. Cable One signed on early last year with Synacor for its first crack at TV Everywhere services and a new customer Web portal.
DTS and RGB Networks said they will integrate the former’s audio solutions into the latter’s multi-screen IP video delivery products. The result is a product that video distributors can use to control program and advertising sound levels in conformance with the CALM Act.
In Netflix's bid for a flagship original drama of its own – a "Sopranos" to its HBO – the subscription streaming service is presenting a high-class adaptation of a British political thriller offered up all at once, with its first season immediately ready for TV-viewing gluttony.