Interviews and Talks Category

Interviews and talks from key people in the internet TV industry

Posted in: Broadband Video Companies, Interviews and Talks, News, Video on Demand by Dave Parrack on May 8, 2011

Netflix LogoNetflix box Reed Hastings recently revealed a few choice nuggets of wisdom concerning the current state of his business and the direction it could be headed in the future. It’s well worth a read.

Netflix

Netflix continues to go from strength-to-strength, with more subscribers, more content, and more revenue being added by and to the company all the time. And this rise to the top doesn’t look like stopping or even slowing down anytime soon.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, who has been an outspoken source for tasty quotes over the years, recently spoke to Peter Kafka at MediaMemo. And some of what he had to say was both surprising and interesting.

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Posted in: Broadband Video Companies, Interviews and Talks, News, Video on Demand by Dave Parrack on January 3, 2011

Netflix LogoNetflix is a company with big ambitions. And it’s video streaming which is likely to enable the company to fulfill those ambitions. That is, at least, if it can gain a foothold outside North America.

Netflix Emigrating?

As a Brit I’ve been looking upon Netflix and its streaming ‘Watch Instantly’ service with envious eyes over the past couple of years. This is a killer service available at a very reasonable price, but it’s been a U.S.-only affair for too long.

In September, Netflix finally traveled across one border, offering Canadians their own streaming content subscription service. And while it isn’t a patch on its U.S. counterpart, it’s been received well enough that more forays into foreign climes now look likely.

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Google TV LogoThe television industry is treating Google as the devil thanks to Google TV, with most networks and many video websites blocking the set-top box and associated devices from accessing them. But Google isn’t backing down, with CEO Eric Schmidt extolling the virtues of his company’s innovation.

Google TV

Google TV launched in October after months of speculation. The Logitech Revue set-top box and a range of Sony TVs and other devices enable viewers to bring online video into the living room in a big way. At least that was the idea.

The problem is that all connected TV platforms need content to thrive. Unfortunately for Google, ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and Hulu have all blocked Google TV from accessing their online video feeds, and there doesn’t seem much hope that they’ll change their minds anytime soon.

Not that Google is worried. Yet.

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hulu-logoHulu is already big, but it’s due to get even bigger over the next few years. Company CEO Jason Kilar spelled out the present statistics recently, as well as talking about advertising options and the new content suggestion feature.

Hulu On The Up

Hulu defied the cynics and survived past its first year. But it did much more than just survive, instead becoming one of the most popular online video services in the U.S., the most popular in terms of delivering on-demand, catch-up television.

Hulu has succeeded not only by enticing viewers in, but also by keeping on the good side of the networks and cable companies; a task obviously made easier by the fact that it’s run by three of the networks themselves.

However, this strategy seems to be working, with viewer numbers up and profits climbing.

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99 Cent Only Stores LogoAnother day, another big media boss comes out against Apple’s plans to revolutionize online video. And this one really doesn’t look like he’ll be backing down anytime soon. Or ever, for that matter.

Apple Revolution

Apple is ultra-keen to bring online video into the living room in a mainstream way. With Apple TV providing the hardware to make this happen, all that’s now needed is content; lots of it, and at the right price.

Apple has already done this for music in a big way, with iTunes bringing the reality of albums and tracks available to purchase in a simple way to bear. And Apple has managed to persuade the music industry and major record labels that pricing is the key.

Unfortunately, the company appears to be having a tougher time persuading the television industry and major networks and channels that this is also the case for video.

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Smashed TVIt seems not everyone involved in the cable business is blind to the reality of online video and the trend for cord cutting. But will the warning from the CEO of Verizon fall on deaf ears as so many others have done before?

Cord-Cutting

Cord-cutting in this context is the act of cable customers canceling their TV subscriptions as they realize online video can fill the void left when they do so. And with much of it free, or highly-affordable (especially when compared to the average cable bill) these people are saving a lot of money every month.

This year has seen much talk of cord-cutting and the effect the trend will have on cable companies. Some estimates suggest one-in-eight U.S. households will cut the cord this year, while Nielsen suggests the whole thing is nothing more than a myth.

The truth is probably somewhere in between the two.

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Boxee BoxThe Boxee Box is finally available to pre-order, with the actual product shipping in November. But does this streaming set-top box have any hopes of competing with Apple TV, Google TV, and the other connected platforms all vying for this crowded space?

Boxee

Boxee is a company best-known for its cross-platform, open-source media center for all. Available on PC, Mac, and Linux, this is a media center designed to fill the gap between your TV and your computer, and many people use and love it.

However, in December 2009 Boxee announced it was entering the set-top box arena with an offering developed by D-Link. The Boxee Box (pictured above) is the result, and although it’s been delayed it’s now finally available to pre-order.

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