About Katherine Allen

I’m the Business Development Director for the European Edition of Streaming Media magazine, and the Streaming Media Europe Conference and expo.

Author Archive | Katherine Allen

Adoption of New Media Technology: Western Europe leads the way

Western Europe is setting the pace when it comes to the adoption of new media technology, accounting for all of the Top 5 international markets in 2012, according to a new study.

The New Media Forecasts Report from ZenithOptimedia tracks the adoption of IPTV, smartphones and tablets in the top 19 digital markets in the world. In 2012, Norway ranked first, followed by France, Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark.

Norway’s first place was driven by high take-up of smartphones and tablets.

Across all the markets analysed, smartphones were the most prevalent device, but smartphone penetration varied widely between countries, ranging from 73% in Sweden to 18% in Brazil. IPTV was the slowest growing of the three technologies and also had the widest range of adoption.

Looking ahead, the report forecasts that the Netherlands will claim top spot by 2015, driven by its extremently rapid uptake of IPTV which is forecast to be in 91% of Dutch households in two years.

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UK Mobile Video Audience Grows 262%

The UK mobile video audience grew by 262% in the year to December 2012 to more than 11 million, according to a report just released by comScore. During the same period the audience for video viewing across all online platforms also grew by 8%  to more than 37 million.

Not surprisingly, YouTube remains the top video destination, followed by Amazon and Facebook.

According to the report, the UK has the highest level of online engagement in Europe, with hours spent online increasing by 5% year on year and UK consumers each spending on average more than 37 hours online. Films and job search sites are the fastest growing content categories.

UK smartphone penetration stands at 64% but is increasing: 82% of phones acquired in December 2012 in the UK were smartphones, compared to 74% in December 2011. And more than 6 million Brits had both a smartphone and a tablet in December 2012. Looking at the five major European markets (Germany, UK, Italy, France, and Spain), the total mobile audience now numbers more than 240 million people, and smartphone penetration stands at 57%.

Other highlights include the finding that 15% of Europe’s 408 million internet users are in Russia where the internet audience grew 15% since December 2011, to more than 61 million.




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Film Release Windows Limit Digital Opportunity in Europe: Kroes

Rigid film release windows restrict flexibility, and make it harder for the sector to capture digital benefits, according to Neelie Kroes, Vice President of the European Commission. Kroes, who is responsible for the Digital Agenda for Europe, argues in a blog post that a one-size-fits all approach does not work for audiences, or for films. Different movie outlets, whether in the cinema, on TV, on DVD or online all have their own strengths and respond to different consumer needs.

“While some films might be better served by a first exclusive cinema release – like blockbusters with a big audience appeal”, she comments, “others may do better by going online earlier.” She goes on to say that the lower digital distribution costs “may especially suit low-budget, niche films.”

All parts of the film ecosystem should be able to experiment, she argues. However she also makes it clear that she does not wish to impose anything on the film industry. Her goal, she says, is to benefit everyone in the chain – filmmakers, cinemas and audiences – through encouraging the use of digital channels to the full.

According to Kroes, a more flexible approach would boost revenues, and bring European films to wider audience. And she poses a pointed question to underline her argument: “how many of the 915 European feature films made in 2011 did you see; and how many were you able to see?”

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Most British TV Viewers Use Second Screen

Most British TV viewers have tried using a second screen, according to new research revealed today by Red Bee Media.

86% of owners of smart devices polled said that they had used their phone, tablet or computer as a second screen while watching TV. This includes using the device for a range of activities including emailing, interacting with social media, browsing and shopping on the internet. 52% of respondents said that they had used their second screen to find out more about a specific TV programme. But just 1 in 5 survey respondents reported that they had tried a synchronous companion app.

Those that had tried using a companion app reacted positively to the experience: 78% of this group said that they thought that smart devices offered a better way to engage with their favourite TV shows compared to more traditional methods such as phone-ins or red button services.

More than 2000 UK-based smart device owners were polled in the survey.

Delivery and monetisation in a Multi-Screen World is the subject of a panel discussion at Streaming Media Europe next week, featuring Hewlett-Packard’s Dion Eusepi, Robert Gribnau from Octoshape, Helge Høibraaten of Vimond Media Solutions, Xstream’s Frank Thorup, and Sami Kanninen, Head of WebTV at Finland’s MTV Oy. More details here.


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YouTube Launches Original Channels from UK, France and Germany

YouTube is extending its Original Channels lineup with a ‘new generation’ of channels from the UK, France and Germany. The company announced back in October 2011 that it was adding  nearly 100 new original channels from established producers and media companies, with the first tranche of channels all coming from US content producers.

The UK channel lineup includes On Earth, featuring natural history content from BBC Worldwide, Jamie Oliver’s Food Channel (Jamie Oliver Ltd and FreshOne), and Truthloader, a citizen journalism channel from ITN Productions. French channels include celebrity news from Endemol’s It’s Big and extreme sport channel X-Treme Video. German channels include motoring, humour, fitness and entertainment.

YouTube’s top 25 original channels are now averaging over a million views each week, according to a blog post by Robert Kyncl, YouTube’s Global Head of Content.

The ways in which broadcasters and content producers are fostering deeper relationships with their online and broadcast audiences will be a major focus at Streaming Media Europe next week, with speakers including the BBC and Channel 4. 

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Digital TV Now in Over 50% of Homes Worldwide

A new report estimates that the digital TV market worldwide now stands at over 50% of TV households, despite real disparities between countries.

Looking ahead to 2016, the number of TV households worldwide will reach more than 1.5 billion, an increase of more than 9% in 5 years, according to the report from IDATE. The penetration of digital TV households worldwide will be 77% of TV households by 2016.

Cable will remain the main access mode for these households, but will gradually lose ground to satellite and IPTV which the report forecasts will account for 30% and 7% of TV households, respectively, by the end of 2016. Terrestrial TV will continue its decline despite the development of hybrid TV solutions, dropping to the number three access method by 2016 with approximately 26% of the global market.

The global TV industry’s revenue will come to €340.1 billion in 2012, estimates the report. Pay-TV revenue will grow an average of almost 3% annually between 2012 and 2016, and advertising revenue will see strong growth of more than 21% during the same period. The reports also forecasts that public financing and license fees will increase significantly during the period.


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Olympics drive record usage of BBC iPlayer

The London Olympics drove record usage of the BBC iPlayer catch-up service, according to the BBC, with 196 million requests during the month of August. Usage on mobile and tablet devices also broke records, contributing almost a fifth of total requests in the month.

The BBC’s data includes all scheduled TV channel output but excludes the 24 web-only sports streams produced for the Olympics.

Jane Weedon, Director of Business Development for BBC Future Media will be giving the opening keynote on Wednesday 17 October at Streaming Media Europe. To attend the keynote for free, register here.


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Streaming Media Europe Readers’ Choice Awards: Finalists Announced

The Finalists have been announced for this year’s Streaming Media Europe Readers’ Choice Awards.

Almost 4,000 readers submitted their votes for a total of 304 nominees in 15 categories.

Below is the list of finalists — the top three vote-getters in each category, in alphabetical order. The winners will be announced at Streaming Media Europe in London later this month. The Awards ceremony will take place during the drinks reception in Streaming Media’s Expo on Tuesday 16 October and entry is FREE for all pre-registered exhibition visitors. Click here to register and celebrate with the lucky winners!

Analytics/QOS solution
Bridge Technologies

Video Advertising platform

Music & Audio Delivery solution

Best Live Webcast 2012
Interlake Media
Streaming Tank

Video Discovery Service

Best Streaming Innovation 2012

Webcast platform
Sonic Foundry

Delivery Network

TV over IP solution

Streaming Services Provider
i2i Media

Mobile Video app or soln

Cloud Video Service

Online Video Platform

Server hardware/software

Transcoding solution


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Live Webcasting for Corporate Events: TalkPoint’s Simon Frusher Shares his Thoughts

Simon Frusher, Director of EMEA Operations for TalkPoint has been producing live webcasts for over 15 years and will be moderating a session on live webcasting for corporate events at the upcoming Streaming Media Europe conference.

What will you be talking about at Streaming Media Europe? Why have you chosen this subject?

I started my career in event staging and have always been involved in face-to-face events. I think there are a range of possibilities of how webcasting can enhance the live event sector, so I’m excited to discuss the power of timely delivery and how it can enhance the impact of an event. Event companies and clients need to see what is now available in the marketplace.

Name some key challenges faced by your clients, and tell us how you are overcoming them?

We have a diverse client base, with some understanding the benefits of webcasting more than others! We approach clients in a consultative manner to make sure that a webcast is suited to their specific needs.

What do you see as major trends in streaming media?

Mobile delivery has definitely been on the rise, and this has been one of our standard offerings for more than two years.

What do you enjoy the most about your job in this industry?

It’s a pleasure to help companies enhance their communication and to enable people to participate in events where travel might have prohibited their involvement.

What is the best reason to attend Streaming Media Europe?

As an attendee, exhibitor and panellist, it’s always good to catch up with old friends, discuss current industry trends and to see the field growing from strength to strength each year. 

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Global Pay TV Market to Grow 5% This Year

The international market for pay TV subscribers continues to grow despite the effects of cord-cutting in the US, according to new data. ABI Research forecasts that there will be almost 860 million subscribers at the end of this year, an increase of 5% compared to 2011. The strongest pay TV market growth area is the Asia-Pacific region which, says ABI, will add more than 27 million subscribers in 2012.

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