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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

SeaChange swoops into social TV with $14MN Timeline acquisition DetailsJoseph O'Halloran | 23 December 2014 In a bid to bring

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    SeaChange swoops into social TV with $14MN Timeline acquisition

    DetailsJoseph O'Halloran | 23 December 2014


    In a bid to bring social media analytics to a multiscreen TV footprint, SeaChange International has entered into a binding agreement to acquire social visualisation firm TLL.

    SeaCHTimelineThe company does business under the Timeline Labs brand offering software designed to enable broadcasters to analyse social media messages in real-time, find and transmit social trends and insights, and measure viewing audience engagement across television, mobile and PC. It then provides visualisations ready for air on television and over-the-top (OTT) services. Timeline's major investors include former executives of television networks ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, Sinclair Broadcast Group, and Guggenheim Digital Media. Its customers include FOX Television Stations, Sinclair, Media General and Tribune broadcast television stations, as well as online providers like 120sports.com.

    Under the terms of the deal with SeaChange that is expected to close on 2 February 2015, Timeline will receive $14 million in cash, $8 million in shares of SeaChange stock, and up to an additional $2.5 million in deferred performance-based consideration payable in shares of SeaChange stock. This payment will be based on financial targets for Timeline Labs over a two-year period. All Timeline Labs employees, including the CEO and senior leadership team, will join SeaChange as part of the transaction. In addition, SeaChange has agreed to name one person designated by Timeline Labs' equity holders to the SeaChange board of directors, effective as of closing of the transaction.

    "Social media can be captured for the advantage of the television industry, bringing concrete, new value by truly reflecting and serving the current mindset of their specific audiences," said SeaChange CEO Jay Samit commenting on the deal. "While the broadcast segment represents an accretive growth opportunity for SeaChange, the Timeline Labs platform will allow us to extend the social news paradigm to multiscreen television service providers, so they can easily launch ready-made and differentiated live or on-demand content packages tailored to the interests of their subscribers."

    SeaChange and Timeline Labs has already worked together, collaborating to enable the NewCoin TV audience measurement venture with FOX Television Stations, Tribune Media and Univision.

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    Millicom targets Costa Rica DTH with TeleCable operation

    DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 23 December 2014


    Keeping its strong bet on Latin America, Sweden's telco Millicom is to acquire the business of TeleCable Económico TVE and merge the company with its Costa Rican subsidiary, thus increasing participation on direct-to-home (DTH) and cable TV.

    The agreement is subject to regulatory approval, which is why the Millicom Cable Costa Rica subsidiary, trading as Tigo, has made an application for the agreement to be sanctioned by the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones (SUTEL), the industry regulator in the country.

    Tigo provides residential services such as cable and satellite TV, internet and home phone IP. It also provides data connection services to the corporate market, high speed internet, IP business telephony and many other local services.

    Although most of Millicom's international operations are still focused on mobile business, pay-TV has been gaining importance since the beginning of the year, especially in the Central American region.

    Complementing cable platforms across Tigo territories, the telco launched a DTH platform in June, which is operating in Costa Rica, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Bolivia, gathering 45,000 subs in one quarter. Tigo Millicom's satellite TV has found great acceptance in Costa Rica, with 12,000 new clients since last June.

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    Advertising preps for real recovery in Spain

    DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 23 December 2014


    Following a 2014 in which many sectors of the advertising business have shown signs of recovery, Spain is preparing for a 2015 with general and stable growth with pay-TV and online video also set to co-lead a market topped by the mobile industry.

    According to Zenith experts' panel, a general 1% growth is expected for 2015, something to be savoured after six consecutive years of falls since 2008. Mobiles are set for 8.5% growth during the following year, online video (6%), pay-TV (4.6%) and free-to-air (FTA) TV (4.4%).

    The figures are a continuation of the numbers shown during 2014, specially regarding the second half of the year, during which most of Zenith experts consider the market reactivation has started.

    By the end of the year 2014, the online video ads business is projected to see a 29% increase in business, a boom which has placed Spain on the online video map and pay-TV by 3.5%, with FTA closely following it growing by 3.2%.

    Social networks investments will be also gathering a big slice of the pie, almost reaching €45 million and showing 14% by the end of the year. Apps and mobile sites ads will be also gaining importance in the publicity industry.

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    Telenet’s Play makes older PVRs redundant

    A number of Telenet PVRs have become redundant with the introduction of Telenet’s new Play catch-up and TV everywhere service.

    Earlier this year, a large number of Telenet cable receivers turned useless when the operator stopped distributing MPEG2 signals over its network. This time, the introduction of the new Play service makes early PVR models redundant because Play using a cloud-PVR service which can not be accessed by the older models.

    Customers can continue using the older models when they choose not to use the new service. People who opt for a Play subscription will be offered a free exchange of equipment.

    The free exchange of equipment is only available for customers who have a rental decoder.

    This i the third time this year that Telenet is causing dissatisfaction with its customers, following the termination of the MPEG2 broadcasts and the recent price hike.

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    Eurosport widens Polish reach

    The Polish cable operator Multimedia Polska will add Eurosport 2 HD to its offer in January.

    As a result, subscribers will have access to all Eurosport channels currently available in the country, namely Eurosport, Eurosport HD, Eurosport 2 and Eurosport 2 HD.

    Eurosport 2 HD will be available in Multimedia Polska’s Sport HD Extra package.

    It will become the 14th channel from the Discovery Networks portfolio distributed by the operator.

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    Crimea set for DVB-T2 services

    Russia will spend R10 million (€145,427) on the establishment of a DVB-T2 network in Crimea, the territory it annexed from Ukraine earlier this year.

    Quoting the website of public procurement in Russia, TV-Digest reports that the Russian Television and Radio Broadcasting Network (RTRS) has announced a tender for the Crimean Federal District and city of Sevastopol.

    It adds that according to the tender documentation, the network will have to give access to the services offered by Russia’s first and second national DTT multiplexes.

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    Dutch S-VOD portal WappZapp pulls the plug

    The Dutch streaming video portal WappZapp is terminating its services on January 20 after failing to attract enough subscribers to its premium WappZapp Plus product.

    In a blog post WappZapp founders Wienke Giezeman and Colin Ellis write that the service attracted 130,000 monthly users to its free service, but that the number of people subscribing was not enough.

    The premium version offers 2,600 hours of Dutch movies, art house films, documentaries and concerts for a fee of €7.99, but competition with Netflix and RTL’s Videoland was too fierce and the company is now pulling the plug.

    Earlier this year, WappZapp received funding from Sanoma Ventures (part of the publishing and broadcasting group), but the founders failed to get fresh investments this time around. They will now join Sanoma and its broadcasting arm SBS to work with the latter’s fledgling VOD service.

    Earlier this year another Dutch S-VOD service, Ximon, who also specialised in Dutch productions and art house movies, decided to end its service due to lack of paying subscribers.

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    CES 2015: Skyworth, China Telecom launch connected TV

    DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 08 January 2015


    Skyworth has launched a connected TV for China Telecom's 25 million IPTV subscribers with what they claim is the world's first smart TV with embedded G.hn powerline connectivity from Marvell.

    The G.hn technology will enable China Telecom's IPTV user base to receive broadband and IPTV directly into the TV set through the home's power lines without the need for an external IPTV set-top box, wireless or Ethernet connectivity.

    "We're very excited to join hands with Skyworth and Marvell, leaders in the industry, to unveil the first Yue Me platform-based smart TV, the Skyworth E690C," said Liu Ping, GM, Marketing, China Telecommunications Corporation.

    "The new product will become the hub of entertainment in smart homes, delivering extensive in-home information services including convenient living, education, healthcare, shopping, games, and entertainment, etc, to provide consumers with ease and convenience," he added.

    Liu Tangzhi, GM of Skyworth's RGB TV company, said: "Skyworth and Marvell have created the industry's first smart TV with the integration of G.hn technology and achieved mass production through our joint efforts. The new generation of smart TVs will realise immediate broadband connection with plug-and-play simplicity, and give consumers an extraordinary experience by providing high quality HD video."

    Featuring powerline, coax and phone line networking in a single technology, Marvell claims its single G.hn chipset design reduces overall cost and time-to-market and enables data transmission rates at four times greater than that of other legacy systems.

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    CES 2015: MINT freshens UXP Systems with Ericsson partnership

    DetailsEditor | 08 January 2015


    As part of its programme to show CES 2015 its capabilities in improving TV operators' users' experiences, Ericsson is collaborating with UXP Systems to deploy the MINT Unified Services Platform on its Mediaroom IPTV platforms.

    MINT is designed to allow operators to simplify next-generation user access and on-boarding, and create universal profiles for personalised experiences, potentially enhancing operators' abilities to monetise next generation services, provide a consistent, personalised user experience across all screens, and maximise competitive position in the markets they serve.

    "The collaboration between Ericsson Mediaroom and UXP Systems' MINT Unified Services Platform empowers Ericsson to provide operators with the most compelling TV services," said Ericsson vice president of marketing of product area Mediaroom Ben Huang, in between a busy CES 2015 schedule in which the company's middleware was demonstrated. "Personalisation will be at the forefront of the viewing experience, allowing users to create their personal profiles, receive video-on-demand recommendations, and blend cloud services into their TV profiles."

    Indeed MINT works across both Ericsson Mediaroom and Ericsson Mediaroom Reach platforms today, providing a converged user experience across all devices. The result, said the company, are flexible user access management capabilities for customer journeys embracing user options supporting freemium models and guest accounts without changes to existing BSS/OSS infrastructure. These also can provide universal user profiles, delegated access and hierarchy management for all members of the household across all services and devices.

    "Ericsson Mediaroom is leading the way in terms of personalisation and integrating traditional content with over-the-top (OTT) content. However, many operators still don't have the flexibility in their back-office subscriber platforms to accommodate OTT user on-boarding, create user profiles and integrate personal cloud services into IPTV," added Jim MacDonald, vice president sales & marketing at UXP Systems, explaining what he regarded as being the benefits to operators. "By combining the MINT unified services platform with the ... Ericsson Mediaroom platform, operators can transform offerings and provide integrated, user-centric experiences across any screen."

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    CES 2015: Harmonic beefs up OTT multiscreen security with PlayReady

    DetailsEditor | 08 January 2015


    Video delivery infrastructure provider Harmonic has struck a note with Microsoft to integrate its ProMedia Origin multiscreen media servers with PlayReady DRM technology.

    By supporting PlayReady, Harmonic says its video solutions can provide video content and service providers with a versatile and scalable content protection solution for the secure deployment of live and time-shift TV, cloud DVR and video on-demand (VOD) and over-the-top (OTT) services on a range of connected devices, ranging from mobile phones and tablets to game consoles to net-top and set-top boxes.

    Harmonic believes that streamlining the OTT multiscreen ecosystem to a unified DRM technology significantly reduces the time to market for high value video services while minimising workflow complexity and points of failure. It regards Microsoft's PlayReady technology as including a variety of features for live TV applications including key rotation, which is designed to provide more robust content protection for OTT multiscreen services, while simplifying operations, minimising service interruption, and reducing costs.

    "Consumer demand for OTT multiscreen services continues to grow at a rapid pace, making it challenging for content owners and service providers to protect and deliver content to an increasing array of platforms and device types," said Microsoft director media strategy Chris Santini. "This technology collaboration plays off the strengths of both companies, simplifying the security and delivery of live, VOD, and cloud DVR services while ensuring enhanced protection of high value content."


 

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