Liberty Global announced today that it was buying a 6.4 percent stake in British broadcaster ITV from BSkyB for 481 million pounds, or $824 million. Liberty Global said in its press release that it didn’t intend to make an offer to acquire all of ITV, but reserved the right to do so if circumstances warranted it.
Even though Rupert Murdoch's $76 billion bid for rival media giant Time Warner Inc. has been rejected, that doesn't mean the change sweeping through the TV and film industries will stop any time soon. The cash-and-stock bid by Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. was partly meant to counter consolidation among U.S. TV distributors like Comcast-Time Warner Cable and AT&T-DirecTV.
Comcast is apologizing after a tech-savvy California customer posted eight minutes of telephone conversation online in which he tried repeatedly to get a customer service representative to disconnect his service. The customer, Ryan Block, succeeds in getting the unidentified Comcast rep to agree to disconnect his service, but only after the rep repeatedly asks Block for a reason.
Sling Media, the maker of devices that let people watch their cable channels while traveling, is trying to become more relevant in the living room. Traditionally, Sling's strength has been in so-called place shifting. Sling is trying to change that with a model announced Tuesday.
Though rejected, a surprise bid by Rupert Murdoch's Fox for entertainment rival Time Warner underscores that large media companies are in the mood for major consolidation. Time Warner Inc., which owns the Warner Bros. movie studio and TV channels such as TNT, TBS and HBO, said Wednesday that it rejected the deal and had no interest in further discussions.
Cisco’s Rob Lloyd and Liberty Global’s Mike Fries have been added to the list of featured speakers for the Denver edition of SCTE Cable-Tec Expo Sept. 22-25. Lloyd, president, development and sales for Cisco, will be on center stage on Sept. 23 at Expo while Liberty Global president and CEO Fries will follow on Sept. 24.
After a seven-month long standoff, Buckeye CableSystem viewers can now watch NBC again after a new agreement was reached with Sinclair Broadcast Group. According to The Toledo Blade, which, like Buckeye, is owned by Block Communications, the new two-year agreement was reached yesterday.
French broadcaster TDF is using Envivio’s 4K Ultra HD compression technology to test a broadcast of the NRJ Hits music channel in 4K. From the Eiffel Tower in Paris, NRJ Hits, which is a leading French music channel, is distributed over the national digital terrestrial television (DTT) service.
Thanks to a new carriage agreement, AT&T is now distributing Epix’s movies and original programming to its U-verse subscribers. AT&T has added Epix, Epix 2, Epix 3 and Epix Drive-In to its channel lineup, and is offering a free preview of Epix that will run from July 25-27.
This month Cox Communications promoted Leigh Woisard and George Richter—the company’s top execs for communications and supply chain, respectively—to senior vice president positions. Woisard was promoted to senior vice president of corporate communications and public affairs while Richter was upped to senior vice president of supply chain management.
Cogeco Cable has abandoned an IPTV project after failing to meet performance expectations, resulting in a Q3 writedown. Instead, the Canadian operator will roll out a TiVo-based service to subscribers in Quebec and Ontario within the next year, similar to that offered by subsidiary Atlantic Broadband.
The company has contracted wth Deluxe OnDemand to power its video-on-demand service, the Cineplex Store. Cineplex’s online subscribers will be able to stream or download content to iOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows 8-supported devices.
Time Warner Cable subscribers can enter a contest to win a VIP trip to the U.S. Open Tennis Championships in early September. Two grand-prize winners can win a five-day trip to New York for two to watch U.S. Open Tennis action in Flushing, New York.
Aereo, the television-over-the-Internet service that suspended operations after the Supreme Court ruled against it, is refusing to disband for good. The company is now using the Supreme Court's own language to force broadcasters to treat it just like a cable TV company. In Aereo's view, that means broadcasters must license their signals to Aereo under a 1976 copyright law.
LG Display Co. has developed an 18-inch flexible display that can be rolled into the shape of a thin cylinder, a step toward making a large display for flexible TVs. The South Korean display panel maker said Friday the flexible display has a resolution of 1200 pixels by 810 pixels and maintains its function when it is rolled up.
The Federal Trade Commission is suing Amazon over charges that the company has not done enough to prevent children from making unauthorized in-app purchases, according to a complaint filed Thursday in federal court. The move had been expected since last week, when Amazon said it wouldn't settle with the FTC over the charges.
Choice Hotels International has picked Comcast Business as a qualified vendor for its triple play service offerings. Choice Hotels has more than 5,000 franchises located across the nation including brands such as Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality Inn, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Hotels & Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn and Ascend Hotels.
With a little over a month left before the kickoff of the SEC Network, ESPN announced it had reached a carriage agreement with Cox Communications. Southeastern Conference college sports action will be available on multiple platforms and across Cox’s entire footprint when it launches. Aug. 14.
Block Communications is buying MetroCast, which it will operate as a subsidiary. The combination of MetroCast and Buckeye Cablesystem would give Block control of roughly 176,000 subscribers. Metrocast is in the midst of an upgrade to all-digital.
Comcast has come up with yet another way of engaging customers across its vast VOD library with next week’s kick off of “The People’s Hot list on Xfinity On Demand” campaign, which allows subscribers to vote for their favorite summer movies and shows. July 14 Comcast will post a mashup of the 200 "must-see" movies and TV shows from this summer.
Charter Communications recently added its Latin View video tier in its New England footprint. With the addition of Latin View, Charter subscribers now have access to 55 digital channels, including 15 in HD, comprised of news, movies, sports, family and children’s programs from Mexico, Latin America and Spain.
Alaskan cable operator GCI has beefed up its TV Everywhere lineup with the recent additions of Fox Network, BTN2Go, MTV, VH1 and Spike on its GCI Go TV Everywhere service. Authenticated GCI TV subscribers can access the channels, at no additional cost, from any device, anywhere. GCI customers can also watch the Fox programming online through the programmer’s web portal and on Hulu through Fox apps on GCI Go.
Former New Orleans Mayor and Cox Communications executive Ray Nagin was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in prison for bribery, money laundering and other corruption that spanned his two terms as mayor — including the chaotic years after Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. U.S. District Judge Helen Berrigan handed down the sentence Wednesday morning.
Level 3 introduced asystem designed for broadcasters to use to create linear channels for secure distribution to cable headends and satellite TV network operations centers. Content owners provide their channel playlist and digital video files, and Level 3 will format and store those files until they’re ready for distribution over satellite or via fiber.
About half of all MVPD subscribers have never heard the term TV Everywhere, though half are aware that they can use their subscription service to get access to programming on PCs and mobile devices -- they know what TVE is, they just don't know that it's called "TV Everywhere."