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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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Streaming Forum Speakers Wanted: Sport and Education Verticals

The program for Streaming Forum 2013 is coming together nicely, but we still need your help. We’re looking specifically for sessions and presenters that can address the growing applications for online video in education and the ever-expanding sport market. In particular, we’re looking for how-to sessions and innovative case studies that can help our attendees understand best practices and new approaches to solving the specific challenges faced in those verticals.

We’re also still looking for speakers who can present sessions or help us fill out panel discussions in the following areas:

  • Formats, Protocols, and Standards
  • Encoding and Transcoding
  • Live Event Webcasting
  • Online Video Delivery Infrastructure
  • Corporate Communications
  • Media & Entertainment
  • Social Video & Second Screen

You can make your submissions via our online submission form, or feel free to reach out to me directly at Streaming Forum 2013 will be at the Park Plaza Victoria London on 18-19 June, and we’re looking to have the program completed by the end of the first week of March.

The Streaming Forum event is a “re-boot” of our Streaming Media Europe events; we’ve moved it out of the busy autumn conference season, relocated to a more central location in London, and put more emphasis on high-level networking and learning. Previous events have included speakers from YouTube, Samsung, BBC, Dailymotion, Red Bee Media, Channel 4, Xstream, Vimond, MTV Oy, Virgin Media, and Deutsche Telekom.

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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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BT Offers New Customers Free YouView Set Top Box worth £299

BT has announced that it will give away YouView set top boxes to new Infinity broadband customers. The Humax boxes are valued at £299. Customers will have to pay a £49 activation charge and delivery. YouView from BT will debut on 26 October.

Broadband customers not in an Infinity enabled area will also be able to get a free YouView box when they subscribe to BT’s TV Essential service for £4 a month, and existing customers can also upgrade to YouView for £49.

The service will provide access to more than 100 digital TV and radio channels, catch-up and on demand TV content from providers including the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5, and access to BT Vision.

The box will have a 500Gb hard drive, able to store up to 300 hours of SD TV or around 125 hours of HD TV.

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Project Canvas and Red Bee Media to Keynote Streaming Media Europe

The final programme for Streaming Media Europe—and its satellite events, the Content Delivery Summit and Online Video Strategies—will be posted soon, complete with the entire roster of speakers, but I’m pleased to announce the two keynotes for the conference.

Anthony Rose, CTO Project Canvas

Anthony Rose, CTO, Project Canvas

Anthony Rose, CTO of Project Canvas—the joint venture among Arqiva, BBC, BT, Channel 4, ITV, and Talk Talk to build an internet-connected TV platform—will keynote day one. Project Canvas provides this description of his talk:

Steve Plunkett, Red Bee Media

Steve Plunkett, Red Bee Media

Project Canvas is set to transform the daily viewing experience of UK television audiences and influence IPTV deployments globally when it launches in the early part of 2011. It will unlock a world of content and services, combining live channels with on-demand, bringing web-based services and interactive extras to the living room TV. Anthony Rose explains how Canvas is creating the right environment for Connected TV to thrive in the UK and beyond.

Day two offers Steve Plunkett, Director of Customer Innovation for Red Bee Media, which provides technology and creative solutions to help broadcasters, content rights holders, and brand owners engage with their audiences in traditional and new ways, including web and mobile. Red Bee Media’s client list includes Discovery International, BBC, Virgin Media, Nike, Lonely Planet, Motorola, and Siemens, and they’ve worked with media brands across the globe, including Sky Italia, TV Globo (Brazil), Star News India, and Canal+ (France). Plunkett will be discussing “Video Everywhere and In Everything:”

Check back soon for more details on all of our events—we’ve got speakers from Adobe, Akamai, Amazon, BT, Cisco, Deutsche Telekom, the Football Association, GlaxoSmithKline, Limelight, Microsoft, Thomson Reuters, Zattoo, and many more.

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Advance Programmes for Streaming Media Europe Now Available

The advance programmes for Streaming Media Europe, the Content Delivery Summit, and the Online Video Strategies event are all online. If you submitted a speaking proposal and don’t see your topic reflected, don’t panic. These are preliminary programmes that we’ll be modifying with more specifics as we get closer to the event. In particular, you can expect several sessions focusing on the hottest topics in online video: VP8/WebM, H.264, HTML5, and Flash 10.1 for Mobile.

We’ll be making our final speaker selections in the next few weeks and announcing the final programmes at the end of July.

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Cisco Predicts Video Will Make Up 91% of all Internet Traffic by 2014

Today Cisco Systems released its annual Visual Networking Index (VNI), and the results are intriguing if not exactly surprising. By the end of this year, Cisco predicts that video will exceed P2P as the top traffic contributor, making it the first year that P2P has not been the leading traffic type. The company also says that by 2014 all forms of video—TV, VoD, Internet video, and P2P—will comprise more than 91% of all internet traffic. That doesn’t mean that 91% of all internet traffic will involve video, of course, and the company notes that popular activities like VoIP are relatively light in bandwidth consumption. It’s also worth noting that the report doesn’t distinguish between uploading and downloading of video; we can only assume the 91% includes uploading, downloading, streaming, progressive download, and file sharing.

And of that video traffic in 2014, Cisco expects 42% of it to be made up of 3D and HD content, though notably the report doesn’t offer a definition of HD video, so we don’t know if it’s 1080p, 720p, or both (or a more nebulous definition.

See the graph below for a breakdown of 12 categories of internet traffic.


Cisco breakdown of 12 categories of internet traffic

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Tvinci Looks to Make OTT Pay Off

Last week, Israel-based Tvinci announced availability of its MediaHub and MediaStore, which in tandem look to solve the biggest dilemma facing over-the-top video: how to monetize it. MediaHub is the backend of the platform, managing video assets, pricing, billing, and analytics. MediaStore is the consumer interface, which is designed to tailor offerings based upon each user’s personal preferences, which are determined by user input as well as viewing history and payment preferences. The system is designed to work with any device—game consoles, set-top boxes, iPad, iPhone, and other smartphones.

Tvinci’s products are already being used by MTV and Orange, and the MediaHub and MediaStore has been selected by Projector TV for the upcoming launch of its video portal.

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Video: Reaching Multiple Screen Convergence

All of the panel sessions at this year’s Streaming Media Europe were filmed, and every week we’ll be featuring one here on the blog. This week it’s the session “Reaching Multiple Screen Convergence: Streaming to the PC, Mobile, Television, and Gaming Devices.” The concept of seamlessly transferring a video session between the television, PC, mobile, and/or gaming device at the consumer’s will is multiple-screen nirvana. This session provides a look at how close we are to reaching this goal and what strategies network operators and content publishers can employ to encourage adoption while monetising these new services.

Speakers are:
• Martin Sutherland, Director, European Sales, Vantrix (moderator)
• Pierre-Yves Le Berre, VP, Business Development, Anevia
• James A. Neufeld, Product Specialist,
• Jim Taylor, Chief Technologist, Sonic Solutions International Digital Media Alliance (IDMA)

If there’s still any doubt about multiple screen—and multiple device—convergence, take note that Jim Taylor was until recently best-known for his work in the optical media field and is the man behind DVD Demystified.

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