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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Amazon focuses on the Rams for NFL doc, All or Nothing Online video giant Amazon has greenlit season two of

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    Amazon focuses on the Rams for NFL doc, All or Nothing


    Online video giant Amazon has greenlit season two of All or Nothing, an Amazon Original Series produced by NFL Films, which will focus on the Los Angeles Rams.


    la ramsCustomers will see scenes from the Rams' entire 2016 season, which began with their relocation back to Los Angeles from St Louis and culminated with the hiring of a new head coach and preparations for the 2017 season.

    “All or Nothing brings Amazon Prime members a deep dive into the lives of professional athletes,” said Conrad Riggs, head of unscripted, Amazon Originals. “We are excited to highlight the LA Rams in season two, a team with a compelling story of relocation, rebuilding and reuniting with the city they once again call home.”

    “NFL Films proved again that they're the best in the business with the groundbreaking new franchise, All or Nothing, whose inaugural season profiling the 2015 Arizona Cardinals was the highest-rated original series ever on Amazon Prime Video,” added Jordan Levin, chief content officer, NFL Media. “Chronicling the return of the Rams to Los Angeles provides an unbelievably unique backdrop to season two and one which provides NFL fans and viewers around the world with a rare insight into a team overcoming an extraordinary set of circumstances to build their future.”

    The first season of All or Nothing, which followed the Arizona Cardinals throughout the 2015 season, currently has an average customer rating of 4.8, with 89% five-star reviews, making it the highest-rated non-kids Amazon Original Series on Prime Video. Customers can now watch 28 exclusive behind-the-scenes clips from season one by accessing the X-Ray feature on Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, Fire tablets and +3P Android mobile devices.

    “Since bringing pro football back to the Los Angeles region last year after a 21-year absence, we have been committed to giving NFL fans an up-close view of our journey,” said Rams EVP of football operations and chief operating officer Kevin Demoff. “We are pleased that NFL Films captured this important chapter in the NFL's history and are looking forward to working with Amazon to bring this behind-the-scenes look at our team to their customers.”
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    SES restructures with dedicated video and networks business lines
    Editor
    | 07 April 2017


    SES 10 satellite HAfter making a series of refinancing moves and announcing changes in corporate strategy, leading satellite operator SES has now re-organised its go-to-market organisation model with the creation of two focused business units.

    To be implemented during the course of 2017, the new SES Video and SES Networks will focus on the video- and data-centric segments in which the company operates. The intention is that the new corporate entity will gather all go-to-market capabilities and allow SES to deliver increasingly differentiated and essential satellite-enabled communication solutions to SES clients in the respective video and data-centric segments. SES Networks comprises the enterprise, mobility, and Government segments and integrates O3b Networks.

    Current SES chief commercial officer of Ferdinand Kayser will now become SES Video chief executive officer while Steve Collar, currently O3b Networks chief executive has been appointed SES Networks CEO. Both will report to Karim Michel Sabbagh, president and chief executive officer of SES.

    “This new market facing structure will enable SES to accelerate the execution of its market centric strategy and concentrate its differentiated capabilities within each community to best serve its customers globally,” said Romain Bausch, chairman of the SES board of directors. “Scaling up its essential capabilities, SES demonstrates strategic determination and foresight, bringing the best of SES to each and every client we serve around the world. The new operating model will allow SES to fully leverage the capabilities of its affiliates, MX1 and O3b, in which we have recently made significant investments, and make them a key enabler of our video and data-centric businesses, respectively. With Ferdinand and Steve, we have two of the most trusted and experienced leaders at the helm of the respective business units.”

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    Former NBCU Exec Joins Pluto TV

    Robert Magdlen named Pluto TV’s chief programming officer

    Pluto TV, a linear-style, free OTT video service, said it has hired former NBCU exec Robert Magdlen to the post of chief programing officer.
    In that role, Magdlen will head up programming and channel development for Pluto TV and its “strategic priorities,” which include becoming the “global, free destination for mainstream, interest-based, and unique TV entertainment.
    RELATED: Pluto TV Raises $30M ‘B’ Round, Eyes International Expansion
    Magdlen will also help to push the programming strategy across all Pluto TV services, including curated channels such as The Feed, Hive, What?!, Funny AF, and Internet Gold, and will be asked to identify new programming opportunities.
    He most recently served as SVP of program strategy and acquisitions at E!, where he oversaw the network’s move into scripted shows with The Royals, as well as reality TV series that included Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Total Divas, and Botched. Prior to E!, Magdlen worked in production for TNT in Los Angeles after starting his entertainment career at Turner Entertainment’s Atlanta headquarters and with Cartoon Network, CNN, TBS, TNT, TCM and Turner Sports.
    Magdlen will be based out of the company’s headquarters in Los Angeles and will report to Tom Ryan, Pluto TV’s co-founder and CEO.
    “Having built successful TV networks, Robert is the perfect person to lead our programming initiatives," Ryan said, in a statement. "Pluto TV is about connecting viewers with both familiar and unexpected content and I cannot wait for our viewers to see what he and the team have in store for them.”
    Pluto TV currently offers more than 100 channels on platforms that include mobile devices, Roku players, Apple TV and Android TV devices, as well as PlayStation and Xbox consoles.

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    Now You Can Watch Netflix Offline on Windows

    Great news if you’re the sort of person who just wants to kick back and watch movies on your laptop when you’re flying. The Netflix app for Windows 10 now supports offline playback, meaning you can download shows and movies and save them for when you don’t have Wi-Fi.

    Netflix added offline playback to its mobile iOS and Android apps last year, which was very useful but meant you were limited to watching on a phone or tablet. (Indeed I put it to use last time I was on a plane; I stuck with some comedy specials since watching a feature-length movie on a phone didn’t really sound too appealing.) But now they’re bringing that same feature to the Netflix Windows 10 app, as first reported by MSPoweruser.

    You can’t download any movie or show on Netflix (they’re limited by their licensing deals with studios), but there are plenty to choose from, particularly Netflix originals like Stranger Things and House of Cards. So now you can load up your laptop for whenever you don’t have decent internet service and watch to your heart’s content. The update to the Windows 10 app should be rolling out today. You can find the free app in the Windows Store.

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    Cartoon Network, IMDA to host animation workshop in Singapore


    Turner’s Cartoon Network plans to stage a two-day Imagination Studios workshop in Singapore in a bid to inspire the next generation of would-be animators.

    CN WeBareBearsThe event at PIXEL Studios is being run with Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and supported by StarHub. An industry workshop will be held on 21 April, while an event dedicated to children will take place on 22 April.

    Animator Daniel Chong – creator and executive producer of Cartoon Network’s hit comedy, We Bare Bears – will speak about his artistic career and the process behind creating one of the hottest animated series.

    At the industry seminars, animation professionals from Turner and leading studios will discuss how to conceptualise, refine and pitch an idea. Attendees will also be given the opportunity to submit their own animation idea to Turner, which, if selected, could be funded and produced by Cartoon Network in partnership with IMDA, and potentially screened across Asia and beyond.

    “Imagination Studios will not only help us to provide a platform to those who are interested in animation, but will also look to inspire passion in future animators too. There is a strong pool of talent in Singapore and we are dedicated to working closely with industry leaders such as IMDA and StarHub to offer them new opportunities and direction,” said Mark Eyers, chief content officer for Turner’s Kids Networks in Asia Pacific.

    “To complement Cartoon Network’s global artist and international shorts programmes, this event is also a great way for us to connect with our viewers, and show them how some of the best animated content is made,” he added.

    Angeline Poh, assistant chief executive for Content and Innovation, IMDA said: “We believe that everyone has a story to tell, no matter how young you are or where you come from. So we hope that workshops like Imagination Studios will help uncover more interesting stories from Singapore and allow them to be enjoyed by a global audience”.
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    VEQTA snaps up Major League Baseball streaming rights in India


    Indian streaming video start-up VEQTA has sealed a digital rights partnership with Major League Baseball (MLB).

    VEQTA MLB rightsThe over-the-top (OTT) video service, which is dedicated to sports content, will stream more than 20 live MLB games each week during the season, which runs from April to September. In addition, it will provide coverage of the league’s ‘Jewel events’ including the All Star game in July, Wild Card games, division series, League Championship series, and the World Series in October and November.

    The partners said they would also launch initiatives to grow the Indian audience for Major League Baseball, including promotional activities and events, along with digital fan activation and engagement.

    “Baseball has a niche audience here and we wish to grow it further,” said Vikram Tanwar, co-founder and director, VEQTA. “Through this partnership, Indian baseball fans will have access to exclusive baseball content not available in its entirety on any other platform. VEQTA is proud to bring this experience to India and assert our commitment to offer the best sports content from across the globe to Indian fans.”

    The company has also forged content partnerships with sports organisations to stream tennis, football, fight sports, motorsports, basketball, rugby and athletics. The OTT service plans to broadcast over 6,000 hours of live sports content in 2017.

    Dominick Balsamo, VP – international media sales and marketing partnerships, Major League Baseball, said: “MLB on VEQTA will serve Indian baseball fans with comprehensive coverage of the league from opening day through the World Series, and present the game on an exciting platform that promises to attract new baseball fans and players in India.”

    Co-founded by Vikram Tanwar and Varun Mathur in Delhi in April 2015, VEQTA raised US$500,000 in seed capital from Chatsworth Management and sports management company ITW Consulting in May 2016.
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    SES restructures with dedicated video and networks business lines


    After making a series of refinancing moves and announcing changes in corporate strategy, leading satellite operator SES has now re-organised its go-to-market organisation model with the creation of two focused business units.


    SES 10 satellite H
    To be implemented during the course of 2017, the new SES Video and SES Networks will focus on the video- and data-centric segments in which the company operates. The intention is that the new corporate entity will gather all go-to-market capabilities and allow SES to deliver increasingly differentiated and essential satellite-enabled communication solutions to SES clients in the respective video and data-centric segments. SES Networks comprises the enterprise, mobility, and Government segments and integrates O3b Networks.

    Current SES chief commercial officer of Ferdinand Kayser will now become SES Video chief executive officer while Steve Collar, currently O3b Networks chief executive has been appointed SES Networks CEO. Both will report to Karim Michel Sabbagh, president and chief executive officer of SES.

    “This new market facing structure will enable SES to accelerate the execution of its market centric strategy and concentrate its differentiated capabilities within each community to best serve its customers globally,” said Romain Bausch, chairman of the SES board of directors. “Scaling up its essential capabilities, SES demonstrates strategic determination and foresight, bringing the best of SES to each and every client we serve around the world. The new operating model will allow SES to fully leverage the capabilities of its affiliates, MX1 and O3b, in which we have recently made significant investments, and make them a key enabler of our video and data-centric businesses, respectively. With Ferdinand and Steve, we have two of the most trusted and experienced leaders at the helm of the respective business units.”
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    Altice boss Drahi reportedly preparing US IPO registration

    Altice boss Patrick Drahi is preparing to kick of the process of floating a minority stake in his US operation by the end of this month, according to French press reports.

    According to financial daily Les Echos, Altice is preparing to publish its IPO registration by the end of April ahead of the flotation of a minority stake in Altice USA.

    Reuters meanwhile reported at the end of last week that the cable and telecom group had hired Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and Citi to lead the IPO.

    Citing two unnamed sources, Reuters reported that two existing Altice USA shareholders, private equity outfit BC Partners and Canadian pension fund CPPIB, which together hold about 30%, would use the IPO to reduce their stakes slightly, with Altice itself seeking to retain its existing 70% stake.

    The IPO will give Altice access to funds to pursue further acquisitions in the US, and could also be used to pay down the considerable debts raised during the acquisition of cable operators Suddenlink and Cablevision, which has made Altice the number four US cable operator behind Comcast. Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications.

    In its Annual report, published at the end of last week, Altice reiterated that it is “exploring the possibility of an initial public offering of a minority interest in Altice USA” and cautioned once again that “the structure or timing of any such IPO is still uncertain and no assurance can be given that an IPO will be completed”.

    Altice also plans to invest significantly in Suddenlink and Cablevision’s networks, with a commitment to deliver a next-generation fibre-to-the-home network capabile of 10Gbps speeds across also of the Cablevision footprint and part of the Suddenlink footprint.

    Separately, Altice confirmed that it planned to invest further in 4G and fibre in France, and in fibre in Portugal, with a plan to cover 22 million homes in France with fibre by 2022 and 5.3 million in Portugal by 2020.

    The telecom group is also planning to implement a new voluntary redundancy plan at SFR in France in July.

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    Ampere: consumers spend more than ever on TV services

    The average consumer is spending “more than ever before” on TV services by combining pay TV, VOD and SVOD, according to Ampere Analysis.

    The Europe and North America study claims that viewers are building their own TV bundles from all the options available, rather than deserting their pay TV operators through cord cutting.

    In North America, average subscription television spend for 12 months in 2016 was found to be $311 (€294) – up US$30 per-person, per-year compared to five years ago.

    In Western Europe the average consumer spent US$95 per year on subscription television after sales tax, up from US$78 five years ago, according to the research.

    “The often-predicted mass cord-cutting from pay TV, driven by the growth of SVOD, has yet to arrive. But let’s not get complacent. There are warning signs,” said Ampere Analysis research director, Richard Broughton.

    “Our research has found that consumers who are doubling-up on their TV services, combining their pay TV service with one or more SVOD services, are twice as likely to be strongly considering leaving their main TV provider in the next six months.”

    Broughton said that pay TV operators must offer the same ‘watch everywhere’ features of SVOD providers and continue to invest in exclusive content to “avoid being left behind by more flexible competitors.”

    Ampere said that consumers are “doubling up” their TV services because SVOD exclusivity means that their catalogues rarely overlap, claiming that in the UK and Germany 94% of titles are exclusive to a single SVOD service.

    It also said that Netflix and Amazon have been the “catalysts”, accounting for more than half of SVOD contracts across the markets surveyed by Ampere Analysis.

    “We estimate that subscription TV services have generated US$18bn of entirely new revenue over the last two years across the globe. Almost half (45%) of this new revenue was driven by SVOD services, the remainder by traditional cable and satellite companies,” said Broughton.

    “While a degree of cannibalisation of subscription TV services is undoubtedly occurring as some consumers decide to cut the pay TV cord, the general trend is for more, not less, access to television services.”

    Overall, Ampere found that at the end of Q1 2017 some 40% of respondents had built a custom TV bundle, up from 24% in mid-2015.

    The proportion of homes taking just pay TV, or pay TV in combination with an SVOD service, has remained roughly stable at approximately 70% of respondents.

    However, the number of homes with on-demand services as their sole subscription television platform has increased from 5% of internet users in 2015 to 13% at the beginning of 2017. The proportion of consumers taking pay TV alone declined from 49% of internet users to just 30% over the same time frame.

    Households with access to subscription on-demand in Europe and North America now typically take between two and three SVOD services each, according to the research.

    The findings are based on a survey of 53,000 internet users from across Europe and North America over the past 18 months.

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    ESPN opens college sports to LATAM


    ESPN is to launch ESPNU and SEC Network in LATAM through a distribution agreement with Mexico’s Totalplay.


    nec baloncesto espnThe channels will be made available to fans and followers of college sports on the fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) and IPTV operator which is available in 20 cities throughout the country. The deal marks the first agreement of both networks outside the US.

    Launched in 2005, ESPNU is ESPN’s 24/7 college sports television network, and SEC Network is devoted to covering collegiate sports in the Southeastern Conference, a college athletic conference whose member institution are located primarily in the Southern part of the US.

    “ESPNU and SEC Network offer the best of college sports and we are excited to make both networks available to Totalplay customers in Mexico,” said Gerardo Casanova, VP, ESPN Media Networks. “Together, ESPNU and SEC Network will immediately offer college sports fans in Mexico more than 1,000 exclusive live events, including regular-season football games, men’s and women’s basketball games and soccer.”

    added Hugo Adrian Hernandez, content director, Totalplay. “At Totalplay we always look for the best experience for our users, and incorporating these new channels reinforces this commitment. We are very enthusiastic to continue offering differentiated services to our clients and to strengthen strategic alliances between two important companies with the same goal, which is to always look for the greatest satisfaction in what we offer.”
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