Archive for February, 2012

Netflix Will One Day Be Part Of Your Cable Bundle

Netflix Will One Day Be Part Of Your Cable Bundle

February 29, 2012  |  Blog  |  No Comments

Netflix (NSDQ: NFLX) is usually cast as a cable competitor, but CEO Reed Hastings said he thinks cable will eventually become an on-demand internet platform, and Netflix just another programming provider that cable can use to sell its services. “It’s not in the short term, but it’s in the natural direction for us in the long term,” said Hastings, speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telecom Conference in San Francisco Tuesday. “Many (cable service providers) would like to have a competitor to HBO, and they would bid us off of HBO.” Hastings continued to identify HBO’s Go on-demand service—as well

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Tello Raises $2.7M to Help Businesses Get Mobile Feedback

February 29, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Tello , which helps businesses solicit feedback through iOS and Android apps and text messages rather than just waiting for it to pop up on Twitter or Yelp, has raised $2.7 million in Series A funding from True Ventures and Bullpen Capital. Katie reviewed the consumer version of the Tello product last year. Google bought a similar start-up called Talkbin last year.

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Time Warner Cable changes bill

February 29, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

TV News: Essentials Broadband experiments in Texas

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Time Warner CEO Pushes TV Everywhere as a Necessity for Cable Operators

February 29, 2012  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Time Warner chairman and CEO Jeff Bewkes isn't exactly known for his shyness on the subject of streaming video on demand services, having referred to Netflix as both " a 200-pound chimp " that wants to be an 800-pound gorilla and " the Albanian Army ." In 2010 he made clear his commitment to freezing the over-the-Web service out of Time Warner's content, particularly shows from HBO . Bewkes' attitide toward Netflix has since relaxed slightly (some of his company's content is on Netflix, though heavily restricted), but during a Deutsche Bank conference in Miami today, Bewkes told the audience of investors that it was time for them to start strong-arming everyone from cable operators to Nielsen in support of the authentication initiative TV Everywhere. One of his most direct shots was at ratings provider Nielsen, especially the company's "Extended Screen" service, which measures streaming content viewer numbers, but only on computers. Viewership "needs to be measured effectively in the manner that the new usage provides," he said. "In short, Nielsen needs to step up its efforts to measure this viewing on more than just the PC." TV Everywhere, Bewkes said, is the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. "The concern [two years ago] was that we were all going to go the way of the music and newspaper, and either we were going to adopt lousy digital business models or someone else in the supply chain was going to force us to adopt those kind of changes," he told the confab. The Time Warner skipper exhorted the crowd to put pressure on cable operators and other distributors who may have thus far been slow to adopt multi-screen on-demand distribution. "I think you should absolutely demand that the companies in which you invest get serious and get moving [on] this tremendous opportunity," Bewkes said. It was an interesting way to frame the request. Rather than push TV Everywhere as a competitor to Netflix and Hulu, Bewkes said that it provides cable operators and film distributors (in which they presumably have financial stakes) with what they need to survive in this new era of on-demand video streaming. Implicit was the suggestion that if cable operators wanted to

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Time Warner Cable Offers Internet Service Priced by Consumption

February 29, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Time Warner Cable Inc. is stepping again into the highly charged topic of consumption-based pricing for broadband service, giving its customers the option of paying less each month in exchange for a cap on their Internet use. The cable operator so far has rolled out the pricing option only in south Texas markets but says it will offer a similar tiered-billing option in other markets in the future. Under the new pricing plan, consumers will get a $5 reduction in their monthly bill if they accept a cap of five gigabytes monthly. Read the rest of this post on the original site »

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A Photo App That Makes ‘Awesome’ a Verb

February 28, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Photography standards have taken a nose dive lately. The photos shared on social networks are often captured on smartphone cameras, which can take poor quality shots. Even photos captured at higher resolutions get downgraded when posted on social networks, including Facebook. Finally, there is an app that gives smartphone camera photos a major boost with powerful photo-capturing functions and editing: Camera Awesome. This is a free camera app made by SmugMug, the strikingly handsome photography site known best for its popularity among enthusiasts who want unlimited storage and don’t mind paying a monthly fee. I got an exclusive first look at this app and have been testing it for the past several weeks using an iPhone 4 and an iPhone 4S. It was available free in Apple’s App Store starting Tuesday and works for anyone, regardless of whether or not they have SmugMug accounts, though those users get a few bonuses. In short, it is by far one of the most full-powered camera apps I’ve used, and it marks an exciting advance for smartphone cameras. Photos I captured with this app tricked friends into thinking they were taken with a high-quality camera. Of the photo apps out there, few come close to Camera Awesome. The app has 297 presets, filters, textures and frames, along with and many other features like image stabilization and burst modes. The popular Instagram has far fewer photo effects, lacks things like image stabilization or burst modes, and doesn’t include video recording. Inventive Inc.’s Camera+ has some of Camera Awesome’s helpful shooting modes, but costs $1.99 and doesn’t have as many effects, or video mode. Camera Awesome offers an ideal mix of beauty and brains

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‘Potter,’ ‘Hugo’ lead Saturn noms

February 28, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Film News: Fantasy films each draw 10 mentions

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Comcast Tells FCC It’s Meeting Conditions of NBCU Merger

February 28, 2012  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Now that Comcast has operated NBCUniversal for a little over a year, has it been the good public interest citizen the Federal Communications Commission envisioned when it approved the $30 billion landmark deal with conditions? In the first of seven annual reports required by the FCC's transaction order, Comcast all but gives itself an "A" in complying with a host of conditions the FCC required with the approval of the $30 billion deal. "As the report shows, our commitments and the conditions, though extensive, have been incorporated into our business activities and become part of the company's 'DNA'," wrote David Cohen, Comcast's executive vp, in a blog post . Among the conditions addressed in the 46-page report , the launch of a low-cost Internet service now in 41,000 homes was at the top of Cohen's list on his blog post. Cohen also highlighted the company's addition of new minority-owned channels, the addition of independent networks (it added BBC World News last year) and increasing the amount of local news at the NBC and Telemundo station groups. Despite the glowing report Comcast gave itself, it's not been all smooth sailing for the media conglomerate. Bloomberg has an outstanding complaint with the FCC charging that Comcast is not fulfilling the "neighborhooding" condition because Bloomberg Television is not located in the channel lineup next to other news channels such as Comcast-owned CNBC. In its report, Comcast addresses the neighborhooding controversy denying that it had violated any condition because it hadn't "rearranged any news channels into a neighborhood since the close of transaction." Bloomberg called the language in Comcast's report "revisionist language," citing the order, which states that Comcast must include all independent news and business news channels "if Comcast now or in the future carries news and/or business news channels in a neighborhood." "[Comcast] deliberately misstates its own legally binding commitments to Chairman Genachowski and the American people on the new neighborhooding condition," said Greg Babyak, head of government affairs for Bloomberg, in an emailed statement to Adweek . Bloomberg's original complaint was filed last June. Both companies have filed a series of complaints and responses with the last document filed by Comcast in October. The FCC has yet to rule.

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Twitter Ads Head to Your Phone

February 28, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Twitter is expanding its ad program to iPhone and Android handsets, as the company gets more aggressive about ramping up revenue. Twitter has already been showing some limited advertising on its mobile apps. But now it will start showing its “Promoted Tweets” — its primary ad product and its attempt to replicate Google’s AdWords program — on phones as well. Just like the Promoted Tweets that Twitter shows on its primary Twitter.com site, these ads will show up in users’ “timelines.” At first Twitter will only allow advertisers to place the ads in front of users who already following their accounts. But within months it will expand the program to allow marketers to reach people who don’t follow them — just as it does on the Web . The announcement comes a day before a Facebook marketing event where that social network is widely expected to roll out a mobile ad product of its own. So the timing may be more than coincidental. But the bigger picture is that Twitter needed to increase its ad inventory anyway in order to accomodate a wave of new ad buyers from its self-serve ad program . So this move would have come sooner than later. Twitter says that any ad buys will automatically include mobile and that it won’t sell mobile ads separately. One odd exception to the expansion — for now, the ads still won’t won’t show up on iPads.

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L.A. sees slow start to pilot lensing

February 28, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Top News: FilmLA sez TV shoots down 23% vs. 2011

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