Pay-TV Providers Allowing Live TV Streaming Outside of Customer’s Home

Time Warner Cable has announced a new app that would allow subscribers with a WiFi connection to stream real-time programming outside of their home. The app, known as TWC TV, offers subscribers access to eight networks, including Aspire, Big Ten Network and BBC America, as well as 16 local news stations.

Cox and Verizon FiOS offer their customers live-TV streaming at home. TWC TV is aimed at those viewers who do not want to be separated from their television when they are outside the comfort of their own home.

Time Warner’s announcement is widely seen as a competitive response to Aereo, a service which would allow consumers to view live television over the Internet.

A number of other providers already offer out-of-home streaming. DirecTV launched such a service last September and currently offers the Audience Network, AXS TV and Sony Movie Channel, as well as others. Comcast streams 12 networks through XfinityTV.com, and Dish offers live TV streaming though its well-publicized Hopper service.

Many of the channels that are available for live streaming have done so in order to raise their visibility. So far, the larger, more established networks have adopted a “wait and see” approach.

Roku’s New TV Stick and Vudu Deal and Virtual MSO Service

Roku, the maker of small Internet video streaming set-top boxes, is gearing up for the launch of its newest device. In a September 20 press release, Roku announced a wireless streaming device about the size of a USB flash drive, called the Streaming Stick.

The Streaming Stick plugs into the USB port of Roku-ready television sets and utilizes Mobile High-Definition Link, a specification originally designed to allow smartphones to transfer content to TVs. The technology is not widely supported, but, according to Roku, it is being added by other manufacturers to televisions.

The Roku Streaming Stick, like its wired set-top box siblings, will allow the user to view more than 600 Internet channels, 75% of which are free to the viewer. Roku has deals in place with Netflix, Disney, Fox, HBO Go, Amazon Instant Video, Hulu Plus, Pandora and UFC. Roku also is in discussions with YouTube. Read more

New Video App M-Go to Support UltraViolet

M-Go is a new video application that has not officially launched but is making quite a splash with content providers as launch day nears. It is backed by Dreamworks Animation and Technicolor and the trademark is owned by a Burbank, Calif., company called Medianavico, LLC. M-Go will have the license to rent content, and it can make content available as “electronic sell through.” The sell through option is possible because M-Go is an UltraViolet retailer.

M-Go is expected to be available via download from Google Play and iTunes later this year.

M-Go recently signed Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures, Paramount and Universal to distribution agreements. M-Go will offer new release content the same day that studios make it available for home distribution. Read more

Progress Update on the Verizon-Redbox Joint Venture

According to a July 24 MultiChannel News article, Verizon Communications and joint venture partner Redbox have begun testing the streaming video piece of their new product. Called Redbox Instant by Verizon the partnership was originally announced in February 2012. At that time the companies expected a service launch date in the second half of 2012.

The service will consist of DVD rentals available at the 36,800 Redbox kiosks around the country and video streaming of titles for those customers that prefer digital delivery. Read more

Netflix Announces 2012 Q2 Results

On July 24, Netflix released its second quarter financial results which reveal that the online video company may have long-term problems maintaining its profitability and subscriber base.    Further, changes in the subscriber base may be the catalyst for the continued slow downward spiral of its stock price.

MultiChannel News reported that while total domestic Netflix subscribers were 23.9 million at the end of the second quarter, Netflix lost 850,000 DVD subscribers in the second quarter compared to a net gain of 210,000 domestic streaming subscribers. Read more

Netflix Customers Combine to Stream 1 Billion Hours

In a Facebook posting on July 3, Reed Hastings, CEO and co-founder of Netflix, announced to the world that the company had a remarkable month of video streaming activity. “Netflix monthly viewing exceeded 1 billion hours for the first time ever in June. When House of Cards and Arrested Development debut, we’ll blow these records away.”

Netflix reports approximately 23 million streaming subscribers for the month of June, making it the world’s largest online video subscription service. A July 5 FierceOnlineVideo article noted that Netflix stock reflected its largest gain since May 23 when it moved up 6.2% and closed at $72.04 on July 3. Read more

Netflix Initiates Owned Content Delivery Network

In an apparent move to assist in data transport cost reduction, Netflix announced its new content delivery network (CDN), called “Open Connect” in a June 4 Netflix blog posting. Netflix announced that it will provide data feeds at no cost to the location the ISP designates, or Netflix will deliver to common Interent exchanges for the IPSs to pick up.

Ken Florance, vice president of content delivery at Netflix wrote, “The world’s other major Internet video provider, YouTube has long had its own content delivery network. Given our size and growth, it now makes economic sense for Netflix to have one as well.” Florance writes that Netflix now delivers approximately 1 billion hours of TV programs and movies each month. Read more

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