Video Distribution Category

Anything specifically related to video distribution on the internet

Posted in: Broadband Video Companies, News, Video Distribution, Video on Demand by Dave Parrack on May 26, 2014

netflix-logo-squareNetflix is officially expanding into mainland Europe, announcing its intentions to launch in six more countries by the end of 2014.

In doing so, it faces several new challenges in France, Germany, Austria, and others. Strong competition and localization issues being amongst the issues facing Netflix in these new countries.

Netflix Expansion

There have been strong hints of a Netflix invasion of mainland Europe for some time, but the company has now made it official by announcing its intention to launch streaming services in France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg.

The expansion will, all being well, happen before the end of 2014, but no launch date has been specified. This new expansion follows on from the American company hitting the UK and Ireland in January 2012, followed by Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Finland in October 2012, and the Netherlands in 2013.

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broadbandA recent decision by an appeals court in Washington to chuck out net neutrality rules could have dire consequences for everyone using the Internet. Including those who both deliver and consume online video.

Net Neutrality Nullified

This week saw the FCC’s net neutrality rules labelled as “invalid. Net neutrality is essentially the idea that all traffic online should be treated the same, regardless of who or where it came from and who or where it’s going to.

The loss of net neutrality could lead to deals being cut behind closed deals that would ensure content from some companies was given priority over others. Those willing to pay the broadband providers for the privilege would have an advantage over those unwilling or unable to do so.

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Google recently unveiled Chromecast, a $35 dongle that is able to stream content from mobile devices to your television. This is Google’s latest attempt to grab a foothold in the TV industry, which it’s going to need to be a part of as its future starts to take shape.

Chromecast

Chromecast is a dongle which plugs into an HDMI on your TV. Apps on your smartphone, tablet, or laptop will then sync with Chromecast, giving you the option to watch content from the likes of YouTube, Netflix, and Google Play on the bigscreen.

Google was initially offering three months of Netflix streaming free for anyone who bought Chromecast. But the company quickly ended that promotion citingoverwhelming demand.” In other words Chromecast was clearly going to sell well enough without such an offer, so why continue offering it.

Indeed, demand was so fierce that Chromecast quickly sold out on Google Play. The $35 price tag (with or without the Netflix offer) is cheap enough to make people make a snap purchase and not worry about whether or not it’s worth buying.

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Netflix LogoNetflix is busy producing its own content to augment the classic content already on the service. It’s this original programming that is causing network executives to have heart palpitations, and with good reason.

Netflix Content

Netflix has always offered some good content, with a mix of old and new shows and movies that collectively add up to enough for people to be happy to pay for the service. However, when it started producing its own exclusive content it changed the nature of television as we know it. Possibly forever.

Netflix’ move into producing original content has had positive effects on the shows in question…

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bbc-logoThe BBC continues to be at the forefront of delivering television online. The catch-up, on-demand iPlayer has been a huge success, and while YouView may end up being a turkey, at least it’s an attempt at forging the future. As is a new Facebook app from BBC Sport.

Wimbledon Beta

The BBC Sports app went live on Facebook a few days into the Wimbledon tennis championships, with up to six simultaneous streams from the All-England Club at any one time. At the time of writing only the finals remain, with Andy Murray exceeding expectations by making it to the men’s singles final.

However, the app will really come into its own when the London 2012 Olympics begins on Friday July 27. For the fortnight of the Games the BBC Sports app will play host to 24 streams showing live coverage of individual events.

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Amazon Studios LogoAmazon is the latest streaming media company to pledge its desire to begin producing its own original content. I can’t help feeling this is the start of something big, something that will forever change the way we view television and movies.

A Small Revolution

As we have discussed many times here on WebTVWire there is a small revolution happening in terms of the production of original video content. After years of merely licensing classic television programming, some streaming companies are getting into the game themselves.

We have already seen YouTube, Hulu, Netflix, Yahoo, and others entering into the production side of things. And now Amazon is joining them, with Amazon Studios putting the call out for writers and filmmakers to pitch ideas that could get turned into series. The shows will be exclusive to Amazon Instant Video, the online retailer’s streaming business.

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BBC LogoThe BBC could soon be selling shows – both old and new – to the British public who originally funded the making of this content in the first place. A good idea, but not a wholly moral one.

BBC & The iPlayer

The BBC is responsible for some of the best television content on the planet. Shows such as Doctor Who and Top Gear have millions of fans around the world. And with the iPlayer it also provides one of the best catch-up TV services on the planet too.

However, there is an opportunity being missed here; to sell content to the public after transmission. According to paidContent, the BBC is now developing plans to rectify that situation.

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