A series of stories in Asahi Shimbun, about the broadband content and movies market in Japan:
– TV broadcasters heading online for future growth: TV Networks in Japan are headed online: Nippon Television Network plans to start a VOD service in October that will deliver 15 minutes of content for up to several hundred yen to registered users. The company also plans to promote baseball games featuring the Yomiuri Giants..Fuji TV Network meanwhile, launched an on-demand streaming service in July, starting with matches from the 2005 women’s volleyball World Grand Prix…other plan to follow suit.
– Motley band of firms vying in Web video: How smaller players like BroadBand Tower are faring in the online movie delivery market… The films are offered free online via streaming video, and is ad-supported. The company produced about 30 movies in 2004 and plans to increase the number to 50 this year. The story also mentions cellphone streaming efforts in the country.
– Internet firms give content providers new distribution channels: Yahoo Japan did an experiment of releasing a movie online simultaneous to the theater release, and it worked well…meawhile, mobile content giant Index Corp wants to expand as a video provider as well. In May, it acquired the rights to distribute in Japan video feed from the 2006 World Cup soccer tournament in Germany for several hundreds of millions of yen.