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Today β€” February 20th 2019Your RSS feeds

Movistar+ secures Serie A and the Ligue 1

By Julian Clover

Movistar has confirmed it will screen top matches from Serie A and the Ligue 1.

The Spanish IPTV platform has confirmed its first matches will be seen on February 22 and continue through until the end of the season.

The Italian and French leagues will join coverage from LaLiga Santander, LaLiga 123, Copa del Rey, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, Bundesliga, Premier League, Liga Iberdrola and the Copa de la Reina.

The mid-season purchase comes ahead of the arrival of DAZN on the Spanish market.

OSN launches new β€˜flexible’ package in Saudi

By Julian Clover

OSN has launched a new ‘flexible’ pay-TV package for customers in Saudi Arabia.

The launch of El Farq, meaning ‘The Difference’ in Arabic follows a three-month test phase in the Kingdom. OSN says El Farq has already recorded a positive response from customers and impressive sales growth.

Bandar Al Mashhadi, Managing Director – Saudi Arabia, OSN, added: “El Farq is about absolute simplicity. It is total value for money, delivered just the way our customers in Saudi Arabia want. We want to make entertainment accessible for everyone, and we are confident that El Farq will further cement OSN’s position in the Saudi market as the leading provider of premium entertainment.”

The package includes Fox, HBO, Disney for a monthly SAR 159. Customers can also watch El Farq anytime, anywhere with OSN Play.

Steve MacDiarmid, Chief Commercial Officer, OSN, said: “As a customer-first organization, we carried out research into the entertainment preferences of Saudi families in order to bring this unique package, to customers here. Our research has helped us understand what really matters to customers in KSA, and OSN has brought all of those elements together in ‘El Farq’. Our test phase recorded growth in the subscriber base across all segments, particularly in the 25 to 44 age-group, which makes us confident that, as we roll out El Farq in Saudi Arabia, this product will resonate with customers and exceed their expectations.”

OSN has also simplified the payment process, allowing both cash and credit cards.

OSN launches new β€˜flexible’ package in Saudi

By Julian Clover

OSN has launched a new ‘flexible’ pay-TV package for customers in Saudi Arabia.

The launch of El Farq, meaning ‘The Difference’ in Arabic follows a three-month test phase in the Kingdom. OSN says El Farq has already recorded a positive response from customers and impressive sales growth.

Bandar Al Mashhadi, Managing Director – Saudi Arabia, OSN, added: “El Farq is about absolute simplicity. It is total value for money, delivered just the way our customers in Saudi Arabia want. We want to make entertainment accessible for everyone, and we are confident that El Farq will further cement OSN’s position in the Saudi market as the leading provider of premium entertainment.”

The package includes Fox, HBO, Disney for a monthly SAR 159. Customers can also watch El Farq anytime, anywhere with OSN Play.

Steve MacDiarmid, Chief Commercial Officer, OSN, said: “As a customer-first organization, we carried out research into the entertainment preferences of Saudi families in order to bring this unique package, to customers here. Our research has helped us understand what really matters to customers in KSA, and OSN has brought all of those elements together in ‘El Farq’. Our test phase recorded growth in the subscriber base across all segments, particularly in the 25 to 44 age-group, which makes us confident that, as we roll out El Farq in Saudi Arabia, this product will resonate with customers and exceed their expectations.”

OSN has also simplified the payment process, allowing both cash and credit cards.

Russian pay-TV market slows

By Chris Dziadul

Growth in Russia’s pay-TV market slowed to 3.2% in 2018, according to the latest data published by TMT Consulting.

This compared to 3.8% in 2017, and as of the end of last year there were 44.2 million pay-TV subscribers in the country. With penetration already exceeding 77%, the market was close to saturation.

Pay-TV revenues in 2018 amounted to R93.3 billion (€1.25 billion), up 10.8% on a year earlier. This growth was similar to the 10.6% in 2017 and was down to such factors as a slight increase in the subscriber base, higher tariffs introduced by some operators and growth of such additional services as VOD and Multiroom.

The number of cable subscribers declined by 0.1% in 20178 (-0.7% in 2017), while the DTH subscriber total grew by 2% (3.8%) and that for IPTV by 10% (13.5%).

Cable TV was still the market leader in terms of subscriber numbers in 2018 (42%, compared to 39% for DTH and 19% for IPTV), as well as in revenue terms (43%, versus 32% for IPTV and 25% for DTH).

Tricolor TV had the most subscribers (28% of the total), followed by Rostelecom (23%), ER Telecom (8%), MTS (8%), Orion (7%) and other providers.

However, in terms of revenues Rostelecom was in top spot with 35%, followed by Tricolor TV (18%), ER Telecom (11%), MTS (8%) and others (28%).

Russian pay-TV market slows

By Chris Dziadul

Growth in Russia’s pay-TV market slowed to 3.2% in 2018, according to the latest data published by TMT Consulting.

This compared to 3.8% in 2017, and as of the end of last year there were 44.2 million pay-TV subscribers in the country. With penetration already exceeding 77%, the market was close to saturation.

Pay-TV revenues in 2018 amounted to R93.3 billion (€1.25 billion), up 10.8% on a year earlier. This growth was similar to the 10.6% in 2017 and was down to such factors as a slight increase in the subscriber base, higher tariffs introduced by some operators and growth of such additional services as VOD and Multiroom.

The number of cable subscribers declined by 0.1% in 20178 (-0.7% in 2017), while the DTH subscriber total grew by 2% (3.8%) and that for IPTV by 10% (13.5%).

Cable TV was still the market leader in terms of subscriber numbers in 2018 (42%, compared to 39% for DTH and 19% for IPTV), as well as in revenue terms (43%, versus 32% for IPTV and 25% for DTH).

Tricolor TV had the most subscribers (28% of the total), followed by Rostelecom (23%), ER Telecom (8%), MTS (8%), Orion (7%) and other providers.

However, in terms of revenues Rostelecom was in top spot with 35%, followed by Tricolor TV (18%), ER Telecom (11%), MTS (8%) and others (28%).

France 24 teams up with iflix

By Chris Dziadul

France 24 has entered into a partnership with iflix that will result in its English language channel being made available free of charge to all iflix users in Asia.

It will be added to iflix News, a 24-hour news hub that aggregates live news streams, clips and linear feeds from international, regional and local news authorities. The channel will be available on both iflix VIP and iflix Free, while France 24’s daily show The Debate will soon also be made available on demand on iflix.

Commenting on the development, Craig Galvin, iflix global head of content, said: “With iflix News, we set out to deliver the most comprehensive news coverage to our users, on their terms, and we are delighted to welcome France 24 on board as we continue to expand this offering.”

Marie-Christine Saragosse, chairwoman and CEO of France Médias Monde, added: “At France 24, we strive to make our content available as easily as possible to the viewers across the world and in that regard, we’re very enthusiastic to be joining iflix, one of the most dynamic digital broadcasters in Asia”.

France 24 teams up with iflix

By Chris Dziadul

France 24 has entered into a partnership with iflix that will result in its English language channel being made available free of charge to all iflix users in Asia.

It will be added to iflix News, a 24-hour news hub that aggregates live news streams, clips and linear feeds from international, regional and local news authorities. The channel will be available on both iflix VIP and iflix Free, while France 24’s daily show The Debate will soon also be made available on demand on iflix.

Commenting on the development, Craig Galvin, iflix global head of content, said: “With iflix News, we set out to deliver the most comprehensive news coverage to our users, on their terms, and we are delighted to welcome France 24 on board as we continue to expand this offering.”

Marie-Christine Saragosse, chairwoman and CEO of France Médias Monde, added: “At France 24, we strive to make our content available as easily as possible to the viewers across the world and in that regard, we’re very enthusiastic to be joining iflix, one of the most dynamic digital broadcasters in Asia”.

Russian OTT service drops Huawei

By Chris Dziadul

Gazprom-Media’s TNT-Premier has decided to abandon the Huawei platform due to a “massive equipment malfunction”.

Quoting a report in Vedomosti, Telecom Daily says Gazprom-Media is now developing its own software for the OTT service and that it should be ready by the end of this year.

The technical failure in Huawei’s platform occurred at the start of TNT-Premier, when many users found themselves unable to register for the service or watch its content.

As previously reported by Broadband TV News, TNT-Premier made its debut in August 2018.

During its first month of operation it was viewed over 3.9 million times and Gazprom-Media have admitted they underestimated the popularity of the service.

The number of connected users was in fact 100 times higher than had been projected.

Russian OTT service drops Huawei

By Chris Dziadul

Gazprom-Media’s TNT-Premier has decided to abandon the Huawei platform due to a “massive equipment malfunction”.

Quoting a report in Vedomosti, Telecom Daily says Gazprom-Media is now developing its own software for the OTT service and that it should be ready by the end of this year.

The technical failure in Huawei’s platform occurred at the start of TNT-Premier, when many users found themselves unable to register for the service or watch its content.

As previously reported by Broadband TV News, TNT-Premier made its debut in August 2018.

During its first month of operation it was viewed over 3.9 million times and Gazprom-Media have admitted they underestimated the popularity of the service.

The number of connected users was in fact 100 times higher than had been projected.

Tanit Koch to head German news channel n-tv

By JΓΆrn Krieger

Tanit Koch will become the new managing director of n-tv, the news channel of German commercial broadcaster Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland, on March 1, 2019.

The 41-year-old journalist will succeed Hans Demmel (63), who is leaving the company after 26 years.

Besides heading n-tv, Koch will become editor-in-chief of the RTL’s central editorial department and set up a joint editorial unit which will form the content foundation for all journalistic products (TV/digital) of Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Koch, previously editor-in-chief of German tabloid newspaper BILD, will report to Jan Wachtel, managing director for digital media and journalistic content at Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Tanit Koch to head German news channel n-tv

By JΓΆrn Krieger

Tanit Koch will become the new managing director of n-tv, the news channel of German commercial broadcaster Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland, on March 1, 2019.

The 41-year-old journalist will succeed Hans Demmel (63), who is leaving the company after 26 years.

Besides heading n-tv, Koch will become editor-in-chief of the RTL’s central editorial department and set up a joint editorial unit which will form the content foundation for all journalistic products (TV/digital) of Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Koch, previously editor-in-chief of German tabloid newspaper BILD, will report to Jan Wachtel, managing director for digital media and journalistic content at Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Tanit Koch to head German news channel n-tv

By JΓΆrn Krieger

Tanit Koch will become the new managing director of n-tv, the news channel of German commercial broadcaster Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland, on March 1, 2019.

The 41-year-old journalist will succeed Hans Demmel (63), who is leaving the company after 26 years.

Besides heading n-tv, Koch will become editor-in-chief of the RTL’s central editorial department and set up a joint editorial unit which will form the content foundation for all journalistic products (TV/digital) of Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Koch, previously editor-in-chief of German tabloid newspaper BILD, will report to Jan Wachtel, managing director for digital media and journalistic content at Mediengruppe RTL Deutschland.

Voxtok brings Music Avenue to Technicolor STBs with Android TV

By Robert Briel

Voxtok has released Music Avenue, the first fully personalizsd audio service designed for TV.

This service is now available on Technicolor’s Android TV based set-top boxes for telecom and TV operators.

Music Avenue is an audio and music service that aggregates music sources and brings smart control over wireless audio devices at home, such as speakers, turntables and headphones. It has been especially designed for TV and comes with companion apps for mobile, tablets and computers.

The service brings together multiple sources and channels such as personalised music video content, user playlists, unlimited music through Napster, information and news about artists, albums releases, concerts, and even vinyl record delivery. Music Avenue also provides the user with control over the multi-room environment and connected audio devices including HiFi speakers.

“Music Avenue offers quite a unique and personalized service that creates an easy connection between the user’s music and video content, seamlessly integrating digital and physical content”, explains Joel Reboul, General Manager of Voxtok.

“With the Napster platform built-in, Music Avenue adds another level of uniqueness to our set-top box environment and to the overall experience of the user, who can now enjoy not only the most current content, but also direct access to great music,” says Gaetan Delcroix, Head of Video Product Unit, Global CPE, Technicolor Connected Home.

Voxtok brings Music Avenue to Technicolor STBs with Android TV

By Robert Briel

Voxtok has released Music Avenue, the first fully personalizsd audio service designed for TV.

This service is now available on Technicolor’s Android TV based set-top boxes for telecom and TV operators.

Music Avenue is an audio and music service that aggregates music sources and brings smart control over wireless audio devices at home, such as speakers, turntables and headphones. It has been especially designed for TV and comes with companion apps for mobile, tablets and computers.

The service brings together multiple sources and channels such as personalised music video content, user playlists, unlimited music through Napster, information and news about artists, albums releases, concerts, and even vinyl record delivery. Music Avenue also provides the user with control over the multi-room environment and connected audio devices including HiFi speakers.

“Music Avenue offers quite a unique and personalized service that creates an easy connection between the user’s music and video content, seamlessly integrating digital and physical content”, explains Joel Reboul, General Manager of Voxtok.

“With the Napster platform built-in, Music Avenue adds another level of uniqueness to our set-top box environment and to the overall experience of the user, who can now enjoy not only the most current content, but also direct access to great music,” says Gaetan Delcroix, Head of Video Product Unit, Global CPE, Technicolor Connected Home.

Yesterday β€” February 19th 2019Your RSS feeds

ProSiebenSat.1 reorganises leadership team

By JΓΆrn Krieger

German media company ProSiebenSat.1 will establish a new executive committee on holding level following the departure of two board members.

CFO Dr Jan Kemper will leave ProSiebenSat.1 on March 31, 2019 to pursue new professional challenges while Sabine Eckhardt, Executive Board Member Sales & Marketing, will leave the company on April 30, 2019.

Rainer Beaujean, currently CFO of packaging manufacturer Gerresheimer, will join ProSiebenSat.1 as the new CFO on July 1, 2019. During the transition period, Ralf Peter Gierig, long-standing deputy CFO, will act as interim CFO.

Wolfgang Link, Chief Content & Channel Officer Entertainment, will be appointed as co-CEO Entertainment. He will be responsible for the linear and digital content as well as all platforms.

Link will lead the new entertainment pillar together with Michaela Tod, who will join ProSiebenSat.1 as co-CEO Entertainment in April 2019. She will be responsible for the management and development of the sales, AdTech, SevenVentures and marketing divisions. She previously spent over 14 years at UK-based technology group Dyson, the company ProSiebenSat.1’s CEO Max Conze previously worked for.

The Content Production & Global Sales pillar will continue to be led by James Baker, Red Arrow Studios, and Reza Izad, Studio71. As co-CEOs of NuCom Group, Claas van Delden and Dr Florian Tappeiner manage the Commerce business. They will report directly to CEO Max Conze.

The new holding structure as of July 1, 2019:

ProSiebenSat.1 reorganises leadership team

By JΓΆrn Krieger

German media company ProSiebenSat.1 will establish a new executive committee on holding level following the departure of two board members.

CFO Dr Jan Kemper will leave ProSiebenSat.1 on March 31, 2019 to pursue new professional challenges while Sabine Eckhardt, Executive Board Member Sales & Marketing, will leave the company on April 30, 2019.

Rainer Beaujean, currently CFO of packaging manufacturer Gerresheimer, will join ProSiebenSat.1 as the new CFO on July 1, 2019. During the transition period, Ralf Peter Gierig, long-standing deputy CFO, will act as interim CFO.

Wolfgang Link, Chief Content & Channel Officer Entertainment, will be appointed as co-CEO Entertainment. He will be responsible for the linear and digital content as well as all platforms.

Link will lead the new entertainment pillar together with Michaela Tod, who will join ProSiebenSat.1 as co-CEO Entertainment in April 2019. She will be responsible for the management and development of the sales, AdTech, SevenVentures and marketing divisions. She previously spent over 14 years at UK-based technology group Dyson, the company ProSiebenSat.1’s CEO Max Conze previously worked for.

The Content Production & Global Sales pillar will continue to be led by James Baker, Red Arrow Studios, and Reza Izad, Studio71. As co-CEOs of NuCom Group, Claas van Delden and Dr Florian Tappeiner manage the Commerce business. They will report directly to CEO Max Conze.

The new holding structure as of July 1, 2019:

Sophie Knight joins SpotX

By Robert Briel

SpotX has appointed Sophie Knight as Director, Platform Services for the UK.

Reporting into Ed Wale, Managing Director for SpotX in the UK, Knight will work with media owners to develop strategic account plans for key publishers to optimise their returns from the SpotX platform. This will include best practice deployments of SpotX’s ad server and data enablement software and identifying opportunities to drive more revenue from programmatic techniques such as private marketplaces and curated marketplaces.

She will also advise broadcast companies such as STV, Pluto TV and TV Player on strategies to optimise their approach for (over-the-top) OTT advertising, and collaborate with other RTL Group companies such as Yospace and RTL AdConnect.

Knight brings more than twelve years of video, connected TV and mobile advertising experience including four years at GroupM managing premium publisher and broadcast inventory for Video-On-Demand, video, and mobile advertising. This followed two years as VOD Media Manager at Xaxis and five years at Specific Media, formerly Adviva. She joins SpotX from LoopMe, where she led the supply team managing relationships with global publishers and supply-side platforms to drive results across video, mobile and rich media in her role as partnerships director.

“Sophie Knight is perfectly placed to answer the increasingly sophisticated questions posed by the OTT companies leveraging our platform,” commented Ed Wale, Managing Director, UK and Spain at SpotX.

“She has an excellent technical understanding of both the buy-side and supply-side approach to VOD, programmatic video, and mobile advertising. She will work with the relevant teams on each account at SpotX to share this knowledge and drive great results for major accounts.”

Sophie Knight, Director of Platform Services, UK and Spain, adds, “I wanted to join SpotX because the company is the market leader in video advertising with a strong reputation for driving success for customers and partners. SpotX takes a cross-screen approach which will play to my background and help more media owners benefit from the overall growth of video advertising. I’ll also be able to advise on ways to leverage RTL Group’s advertising technology stack to deliver a Total Video approach to advertising.”

The appointment coincides with a raft of promotions at SpotX. After more than four years at SpotX, Marta Lopez is promoted to Senior Publisher Manager. Alia Cherif is promoted to Senior Business Development Manager, Ilenia Barnabe is promoted to Senior Account Manager, Supply Operations and Suzanne O’Donohoe is appointed as Senior Manager, Demand Operations.

Red Bee Media opens Red Lab in London

By Robert Briel

Red Bee Media has opened a new R&D facility located in their hub in Broadcast Centre, west London.

Red Lab, London houses a private cloud platform for remote testing, as well as meeting and collaboration space for broadcast and network engineers and solution architects – an approach to R&D that led to the creation of the world’s first software-only playout deployment. Red Bee Media is now formalising its R&D efforts under one name – with multiple connected facilities planned across the globe. Additional Red Lab facilities are due to be opened in Sweden and the Netherlands during 2019.

“We used to have engineers dedicated to each customer or project, but with the migration of all of our customers onto a shared software-based technology stack, we need to organize in a very different way. Red Lab, London allows our multi-disciplinary teams to experiment and collaborate so that we can proactively drive innovation across our services.” says Alex Dubiez, Head of Playout Solutions

Although only opened officially in early 2019, Red Lab was already used late last year to test the control of remote platforms in other UK hubs and across mainland Europe. In testing customer demos, Red Bee Media was able to show full integration between Media Management, Playout, Distribution and OTT platforms – with content flowing between all platforms and across five countries. The Red Lab was also used while concluding testing for the world’s first software-only playout deployment.

“We are transforming the way we are thinking as broadcast engineers. We have never been able to experiment this quickly before and to come up with an idea and try it without worrying about impacting a running service is very liberating. Previously we could only test on individual system components or copies of an entire system, which is expensive and only applicable to one customer. All successful ideas can now be of benefit to all of our customers.”, said Iain Shields, Technical Product Manager for Playout

Red Bee Media has previously been running innovation projects in its multiple hubs, but Red Lab is a way of formalizing R&D activities and creating dedicated and connected research spaces under one banner. It is the next step in meeting the future demands of broadcasters and content owners and during 2019 additional Red Lab facilities are planned in Sweden and The Netherlands.

Sophie Knight joins SpotX

By Robert Briel

SpotX has appointed Sophie Knight as Director, Platform Services for the UK.

Reporting into Ed Wale, Managing Director for SpotX in the UK, Knight will work with media owners to develop strategic account plans for key publishers to optimise their returns from the SpotX platform. This will include best practice deployments of SpotX’s ad server and data enablement software and identifying opportunities to drive more revenue from programmatic techniques such as private marketplaces and curated marketplaces.

She will also advise broadcast companies such as STV, Pluto TV and TV Player on strategies to optimise their approach for (over-the-top) OTT advertising, and collaborate with other RTL Group companies such as Yospace and RTL AdConnect.

Knight brings more than twelve years of video, connected TV and mobile advertising experience including four years at GroupM managing premium publisher and broadcast inventory for Video-On-Demand, video, and mobile advertising. This followed two years as VOD Media Manager at Xaxis and five years at Specific Media, formerly Adviva. She joins SpotX from LoopMe, where she led the supply team managing relationships with global publishers and supply-side platforms to drive results across video, mobile and rich media in her role as partnerships director.

“Sophie Knight is perfectly placed to answer the increasingly sophisticated questions posed by the OTT companies leveraging our platform,” commented Ed Wale, Managing Director, UK and Spain at SpotX.

“She has an excellent technical understanding of both the buy-side and supply-side approach to VOD, programmatic video, and mobile advertising. She will work with the relevant teams on each account at SpotX to share this knowledge and drive great results for major accounts.”

Sophie Knight, Director of Platform Services, UK and Spain, adds, “I wanted to join SpotX because the company is the market leader in video advertising with a strong reputation for driving success for customers and partners. SpotX takes a cross-screen approach which will play to my background and help more media owners benefit from the overall growth of video advertising. I’ll also be able to advise on ways to leverage RTL Group’s advertising technology stack to deliver a Total Video approach to advertising.”

The appointment coincides with a raft of promotions at SpotX. After more than four years at SpotX, Marta Lopez is promoted to Senior Publisher Manager. Alia Cherif is promoted to Senior Business Development Manager, Ilenia Barnabe is promoted to Senior Account Manager, Supply Operations and Suzanne O’Donohoe is appointed as Senior Manager, Demand Operations.

Broadcast Solutions heads to the UK

By JΓΆrn Krieger

German service provider Broadcast Solutions is setting up a new company in the UK.

The newly established entity Broadcast Solutions (BS) UK Ltd. will be located in Basingstoke, Hampshire, with a team of established broadcast professionals, offering the full system integration and products portfolio of the Broadcast Solutions group.

The team will be present at the BVE Show, taking place from February 26 to 28 in London.

Broadcast Solutions has more than 15 years of experience in planning and developing over 300 broadcast projects in mobile and fixed installations. Headquartered in Germany, the company has several subsidiaries and offices across Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

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