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Media, marketing and tech predictions for 2019 from around the industry

Videonet has gathered together some of the predictions that analyst and research firms, and solution vendors have been making for 2019. You can read them here, spanning viewing trends and video technology, advertising and marketing, devices, networks and infrastructure, artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Inside Secure to acquire Verimatrix in $150m deal, with data analytics viewed as one...

Inside Secure, which offers set-top box and multiscreen content protection solutions but also a portfolio spanning anti ad-blocking, mobile payment protection and IoT security, has agreed to acquire Verimatrix. The combined company will be a leader in software-based revenue security, with sophisticated analytics capabilities and wide opportunities for cross-selling. The deal is expected to close in Q1 2019.

What everyone has been reading on Videonet in 2018 – our top 25 stories

Here are the 25 most read stories on Videonet during 2018, in order, reflecting the never-ending interest in new compression technology, close interest in super-aggregation of OTT services, and the central importance of advanced advertising to TV strategy. Our two biggest stories covered the race to bring AV1 to market and Apple’s bid to become the super-aggregator of streaming TV.

Subscription OTT providers are looking to introduce advertising – and broadcast industry should help...

Thomas Bremond, GM International at FreeWheel and Comcast Technology Solutions, has revealed that both companies are talking to multiple subscription OTT services that have concluded that they need advertising to sustain their content investments. Broadcasters could become their sales representatives, aggregating the newly revealed OTT audiences for marketers. If they do not, someone else will.

The Connies 2019 are open for entries – with ‘Excellence in Analytics & AI’...

The Connies, which reward innovation and best practice across the TV and media landscape, are open for entries. The 2019 awards include ‘The Premium TV Award’, with Oscars-style judging, and a new category to recognise ‘Excellence in Analytics & AI for TV and Video’. You can also seek recognition for ‘Best Research Project/Initiative’ or being the best connected agency or media owner of the year. The first deadline for entries is Friday, February 8.

ITV rules out Sky AdSmart deal, but Publicis Media Exchange urges them to get...

The UK’s largest commercial broadcaster ruled out a deal to make its inventory addressable-enabled via Sky AdSmart, saying it does not make strategic sense due to the ‘commission’ it would have to pay. This disappointed one big agency group, which is looking for more scale and easier buys for addressable advertising and wants the major UK broadcasters to solve their commercial differences with Sky and get onboard.

Latest MPEG codec standard establishes performance lead but is hampered by licensing worries

Versatile Video Coding (VVC) has established a clear lead over rivals in benchmarks for efficiency and bit rate reduction but even its advocates concede it will not gain widespread deployment unless royalty issues are satisfactorily resolved. Standards completion is scheduled for 2020, so it arrives around six years after HEVC, demonstrating how the codec cycle is shortening. BBC tests indicate a 27% reduction in bit rate compared with HEVC for a given video quality, and a 25% reduction versus AV1.

AI and machine learning make inroads in broadcast – but ROI will need to...

Adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) in the broadcast and media industry is up from 2% to 13% in just six months, from April to September this year. As a tool for developing media applications with diverse uses, it is unlikely that these technologies will be a ‘flash in the pan’, but there is a view that in 2019 companies will want to see some payback from using them. There are some structural hurdles to using AI/ML, including the fact that it is best suited to working with large amounts of data.

DVB-I will not replace apps but will make service discovery easier from within them

The new DVB-I specification is focused on making it easier to deliver linear TV over the open Internet and the first big challenge is service discovery, harmonising the way that connected devices from different manufacturers, using different middleware, identify available content. It is expected that DVB-I will work ‘under the hood’ of apps and so make apps easier to develop, manage and update – reducing the expensive complexity associated with apps-based television.

Why the TV industry badly needs to modernise the content distribution workflow – and...

The migration to multiplatform TV has given consumers everything they could dream of but has created a list of challenges for content owners and distributors which, together, are straining the fabric of the TV industry. A new Videonet report proposes a solution, which simultaneously streamlines the video, content protection and rights management processes and clears the way to work with more distribution partners, and help them monetise content faster.

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