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.
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.
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.
The two companies create a $11 billion a year revenue corporation determined to capitalise on key industry trends including network convergence, fibre and mobility everywhere, the advent of 5G, the Internet of Things and rapidly changing networking and technology architectures. Connected and smart home solutions are viewed as an immediate opportunity. ARRIS CEO Bruce McClelland says both companies need a broader set of products and services to help customers achieve their goals and fulfill their own visions.
A selection of streaming providers, representing the digital side of incumbent media owners and OTT challengers, were recently asked to identify the biggest challenges when going direct-to-consumer, and the strategies to overcome them. Marquee TV, Crunchyroll owner Ellation, Viacom International, 7TV (the ProSiebenSat.1 Media and Discovery joint-venture) and TV Player gave their insights, from creating a marketing funnel to replace the Pay TV bouquet, to trying to replicate that bouquet in the streaming space, to dealing with ‘binge-and-bolt’ behaviours.
Executives at ProSiebenSat.1 Media and its joint-venture streaming platform subsidiary, 7TV, were emphasising the importance of broadcaster alliances at Videoscape Europe this week. The broadcast group also revealed plans to take a more digital-first approach to distribution, releasing content for streaming in advance of its availability on broadcast TV. There may be more focus on ‘local’ content too, in the battle against Amazon Prime and Netflix.
There is debate about whether we need aggregators in a world where consumers can ‘stack’ a bunch of direct-to-consumer apps. If we assume that every channel owner wants full independence for their streaming service, there is limited scope for bundling, too. Recent developments suggest this extreme scenario will not materialise, as more streaming services are coming under a shared roof.
Traditional broadcasters are working hard to defend their businesses from the rising tide of streaming services, but according to a leading media and tech analyst, it is a battle they are unlikely to win. He expects more FAANG domination because of their bigger budgets. Some commercial channels are being held back by the "burden" of public service requirements.
There are only two distribution HDR formats: HLG and PQ. At IBC, the UHD Forum wanted to clear up any confusion: Dolby Vision is not a separate HDR standard but PQ with a dynamic metadata format on top. HDR 10+ is a dynamic metadata system. The reason it matters is that HDR televisions produced since 2016 all support both PQ and HLG, so it is not a concern that there are two formats in play. Both of them use a single, ‘static’ setting for a given programme to convey dynamic range. Interest is now turning to which dynamic variants the market should settle on. These change the setting as the picture changes.
Sky has revealed how it will integrate Netflix in an onboarding deal that goes beyond hosting an STB app, single billing and universal search and recommendation. A brand new £10 a month subscription pack called Ultimate On Demand combines Netflix with Sky box-sets. Sky Q UHD and multiroom customers get the Netflix Premium plan with Ultra HD and four simultaneous streams, while Sky Q HD customers get the HD and two-stream version of Netflix in the package. The line is drawn not between SVOD and Pay TV but between household types.