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Summary:

Despite tackling a diverse set of web video projects, the 10 companies chosen for our “NewTeeVee’s Next Big Thing” list all have one thing in common: They are rapidly gaining traction in emerging and increasingly important aspects of the business. And so we’ve put our trust […]

Despite tackling a diverse set of web video projects, the 10 companies chosen for our “NewTeeVee’s Next Big Thing” list all have one thing in common: They are rapidly gaining traction in emerging and increasingly important aspects of the business. And so we’ve put our trust in them to see into the future.

Here’s what our first five presenters had to say about what to expect from the video market.

Sam Blackman, CEO of Elemental Technologies

Summary: The company says its goal is to “create the fastest, highest-quality video solutions by harnessing massively parallel, off-the-shelf hardware.” The company’s “Elemental Server,” which today came out of beta, does high-quality transcoding and encoding for enterprise video. Elemental counts among its customers Brightcove, CDC, Citrix, Highwinds and InQtel, as well as partners Adobe, Microsoft, and Nvidia. The founding team comes from Pixelworks (chips for monitors), and in June 2008 raised a $7.1 million Series A.

The Next Big Thing: Unlike other forms of media the Internet will not destroy the pay-TV model. Consumers want a high-quality video experience across platforms (mobile device, laptop, monitor). Consumers will demand quality and ease of use.

Doug Knopper, co-founder and co-CEO of FreeWheel

Summary: We help people manage their web content and the ads on that content and today announced a deal with Warner Music whereby they will monetize their music videos with our service.

The Next Big Thing: Consumers are getting closer to the type of content experience they want when it comes to video. But the road to content delivery will be littered with the bones of those trying to lock down content and maintain control of the content with restrictive agreements and paywalls. We disagree with the idea that analog dollars will be replaced by digital dimes. Wall Street values those digital dimes more today than they do the analog dollars, and figuring out how to build a better value chain around those digital dimes is where growth will come from. Winners will be twofold in this world: those that create compelling content and those who can figure out how to build a business model around that content. When TV Everywhere is TV Anywhere, the last-mile providers won’t matter anymore. So allowing the media companies the control and flexibility to manage and monetize their content will help content creators survive this transition.

Avner Ronen CEO and co-founder of Boxee

Summary: The Boxee Box is coming, and on Dec. 6th and 7th in Williamsburg, Va., the company is showing off its new beta software with new search and social interactions, but not the new box.

The Next Big Thing: It may be the year of TV Everywhere, but the future is Internet Everywhere.  The web on your TV changes everything. For example, it offers audience participation with the news, where you can personalize the content you’re offered. Advertising will become personalized, where you choose the types of ads you see. Sports will also change. And storytelling will change. There are no limits on the length of a story, and viewers will be able to direct their viewing experience. One can also run parallel stories within a show. This also means the viability of TV shows will change. To be a viable show today you need a large audience, so folks have to target the lowest common denominator, but on the web you can attract a smaller audience and still succeed. The business model will also change, and someone can charge for their content without middlemen.

  • By 2015, there will be an Internet show that will be bigger than a TV show today.
  • You will have more Apple subscribers than Comcast subscribers
  • People will watch more video and they will pay more for it.

Matt Smith, senior director of systems architecture for Inlet Technologies

Summary: Inlet Technologies provides software to synchronize the video streams across networks. The company calls itself “the adaptive bitrate leader.” All screens are not created equal — the phone screen is not just a smaller screen. Remember that the user is the programmer, says Smith. “Get used to it.” You can not just repurpose the broadcast across screens. And announced this morning at the show, Inlet is working with Universal Sports.

The Next Big Thing: 2010 will be the year or “more.” More cameras, more feeds, more audio.

James Spare, president and CEO of Canesta

Summary: We’ve invented technology that can track objects in 3-D space. The market for 3-D is huge. A new market is 3-D input, which can, for example, have a screen detect your motion and then be able to interact in a 3-D environment. (Shows video of TV watcher moving channels with hand wave gestures). This will give rise to a whole set of new capabilities. This is possible because of the invention of low-cost 3D sensors and this tech will transform the TV watching experience, and create new revenue forms. We’ve got 40 granted patents on 3D image sensing. Backed by Carlyle Group, Venrock, Hotung, KGIF, Honda, Optex, Quanta.

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By Stacey Higginbotham & Katie Fehrenbacher
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