Quarterly Wrap-up

Consumer first-quarter 2014: analysis and outlook

From the review of Comcast’s proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable to the FCC’s proposed reboot of its overturned net neutrality rules, policymakers are playing a key role in shaping the future course of both old and new media industries.

Pay TV subscriber losses just “seasonal,” analyst says

The multichannel business has incurred net subscriber losses in the second quarter for three years in a row — after never finishing a three-month period in the red before 2010. Bernstein Research’s Craig Moffett says this is simply a normal cyclical state for a maturing business.

Look Ma, TV! First broadcast TV phone appears on MetroPCS

TV broadcasters are making their own contribution to the growing mobile video market with Dyle, a service that plucks their programming out of the DTV airwaves and renders it on mobile phones and other small-screened devices. A Samsung Galaxy phone will be the first Dyle device.

Pay TV stops growing: Top 4 services all lost video users in Q2

With satellite carrier DirecTV reporting its first-ever net quarterly loss of subscribers, the Big Four pay TV services collectively lost 407,000 U.S. video customers in Q2. This was not offset by gains of 322,000 net video users reported by telco services AT&T U-Verse and Verizon FiOS.

DirecTV & Dish face next impasse: the Pac-12 network

Looking to hold the line on escalating program licensing costs, the satellite TV services face the prospect of having to carry more regional sports channels. The Pac-12 Network launches in about three weeks, but DirecTV and Dish are in no hurry to make a deal.

DirecTV says sticking point in Viacom talks is … Epix?

They’ve been negotiating over some of the biggest cable networks on TV, but DirecTV says a near deal to end its weeklong impasse with Viacom has been undone by a lightly watched premium channel. The programmer calls that a fabrication, saying the two remain far apart.

Nick getting nipped? DirecTV balks at Viacom fee bump

Nickelodeon has been the top-rated cable channel for 66 straight quarters. But with Nicks’ ratings in decline, and its shows spread across Netflix and other OTT outlets, the channel’s negotiating position may be softening. In the lastest carriage renewal conflict, DirecTV will find out how much.

DirecTV: Apple TV won’t “obsolete our technology”

While we in tech land tried to read the tea leaves of Apple CEO Tim Cook’s recent cryptic comments on the future of Apple TV, the media world saw the uncertainty around his statements as, “causing a boatload of angst and anticipation,” according to Variety.

Analyst: Latin America makes DirecTV especial

Sure, the satellite TV service faces rising programming costs, flattening subscriber growth and an obsolete one-way broadcast platform here in the U.S. But Sanford Bernstein senior analyst Craig Moffett told investors this week they’re not seeing the company’s huge growth potential in Latin America.

DirecTV adds another 600,000 Latin American users in Q1

DirecTV continued to reap the benefits of Latin American expansion in Q1, increasing revenue in the region by 33 percent while providing a role model for other subscription-based media companies like Netflix who are also endeavoring the expense of southern infiltration. Still, investors remain unimpressed.

Comcast’s new set-top streams live TV to DLNA devices

One DVR to rule them all? In addition to bringing Comcast’s new cloud-based user interface to subscriber homes, the Xcalibur set-top box includes DLNA Premium Video, which will allow users to access live and recorded TV from tablets, PCs, connected TVs and other devices.

Another nail in the set-top coffin

The latest evidence that the set-top box will soon be dead comes from Samsung and DirecTV, which have partnered. Set-top boxless viewing will enable operators to provide the same user interface on the TV without the need for another piece of hardware.

Dish’s Hopper: a whole-home DVR with a primetime twist

Dish is betting big on the DVR to help it win over more customers and fight off competition. The satellite TV provider is coming out with new and improved recording devices that can be taken advantage of from up to four TVs throughout the home.

Broadcasters try, try again with mobile TV

Broadcasters have been looking for a carrier guinea pig to test out their mobile digital TV service, and on Wednesday they found one. MetroPCS has agreed to sell an Samsung Android phone embedded with a chip that will pluck digital TV signals directly from the airwaves.

Miso crowdsources second-screen content with SideShows

Miso is rolling out the latest update to its second-screen app platform, letting users create second-screen experiences that go along with shows they’re watching. The new product adds a crowdsourced aspect to the types of companion content that viewers see when they launch the Miso application.

Social TV startup Miso raises $4m from Khosla Ventures

Just a few days after one social TV startup hit the dead pool, another is raising new funding. Miso announced Thursday that it’s raised a $4 million financing round led by Khosla Ventures, with participation from existing investors Google Ventures and Hearst Interactive Media.

After four years of declines, TiVo adds new customers

TiVo has spent the last several years losing subscribers, dropping to mid-2000s customer levels in the second quarter. But the DVR maker might finally be showing some positive momentum, reporting 117,000 net new customers in its third-quarter earnings report.

The children are our future, and they don’t pay for TV

A weak economy is putting pressure on the pay TV industry, but a bigger issue is the number of young people opting for online services instead. That’s an issue faced by Dish Network, which is trying to figure out how to win over those possible subscribers.

DirecTV subscriptions boosted by NFL Sunday Ticket deal

When it comes to live TV, sports still rule. That’s especially true for football as we take a look at DirecTV’s third-quarter earnings release. Thanks to an NFL Sunday Ticket promotion, DirecTV added 327,000 subscribers, even as competitors struggled to retain existing customers.

My beautiful streaming NFL weekend

What if you could stream every NFL game over the Internet? That’s exactly what I did over the last few days, getting my weekly dose of football not on a friend’s TV or at a bar, but in my own home, on my laptop and iPad.

Who wants Hulu? Amazon, Yahoo, Dish and … Google?

With DirecTV dropping out of the bidding for Hulu last week, its assets are now being sought by Amazon, Dish Network, Yahoo and Google. And Google is bidding big, hoping to wrap up more content and for a longer period of time than the others.

Miso knows what you’re watching, no check-in required

Social TV app Miso just got a lot smarter. The application, which lets users check in and share what they’re watching on various social networks, will now be able to detect what they’re watching, as long as those users are subscribers of DirecTV.

Why Hulu’s owners want to sell, and why they shouldn’t

After weeks of speculation, a sale of Hulu seems inevitable. But while bids from companies like Google, Amazon, Yahoo and DirecTV are expected Wednesday, there’s a compelling case to be made that Hulu’s owners and content partners might be better off not selling.

Why 193,000 people stopped paying for TV last quarter

The pay TV industry shed at least 193,000 subscribers last quarter, based on public earnings results. While most were low-end subscribers that didn’t pay for HD, DVR or other value-added services, the industry faces a tipping point if it keeps focusing on ARPU above all else.

Cable subscriber losses could re-ignite the cord cutting debate

Most major public cable, satelleite and IPTV providers have announced earnings, and it’s clear that the second quarter was a weak one in terms of net subscriber additions. That will cause many to once again question whether online video services are causing viewers to quit cable.

Netflix’s Next Big Business: Saving Cancelled Shows?

Netflix has made a business of “re-run TV” online, and recently jumped into striking a deal for some original programming. But there could also be an opportunity for it to work with broadcast companies to keep low-rated shows with big Netflix fan bases on the air.

Survey Says: DirecTV Could Compete With Netflix Online

If a new customer survey is any indication, satellite TV provider DirecTV might be interested in rolling out a subscription over-the-top video offering like Netflix’s streaming service. DirecTV is polling customers on how often they watch online video, perhaps to create its own online service.

Is Pay TV Making a Comeback?

The pay TV industry had been hit hard by subscriber losses in the second and third quarters of last year, dropping 330,000 users in that time. But subscriber numbers from major pay TV operators in the fourth quarter suggest the cord cutting trend may be slowing.

Direct Over-The-Air TV Coming to iPad and iPhone

You can now get video on your iPhone or iPad from many sources, but grabbing over-the-air local TV directly, which is still the best (legal) way not to pay for TV hasn’t been a possibility. That’s going to change, thanks to iOS-compatible mobile DTV receivers.

Get Ready for Even More Retrans Fights in 2011

Some DirecTV and Dish Network subscribers face blackouts of local TV networks after the satellite providers were unable to reach agreements with Northwest Broadcasting and Frontier Radio Management. While the disputes might seem isolated, they are part of a larger struggle brewing between programmers and distributors.

DirecTV, Starcom In Targeted TV Ad Pact

DirecTV (NYSE: DTV) has struck a deal with Starcom MediaVest to test targeted TV ads next fall, according to The Wall Street Journal. The te…

Who Needs DirecTV If I’ve Got the NFL On My Xbox?

DirecTV might allow future subscribers to its online NFL Sunday Ticket service to watch games on their TVs through game consoles and broadband set-top boxes. But doing so will take away one of the major reasons people sign up for satellite TV to begin with.

DirecTV Kicks Niche Content to the Curb

The latest evidence that the pay TV market is starting to unravel came yesterday as DirecTV executives said the satellite TV provider could drop low-rated cable networks as a way to lower programming fees. That means less niche programming and less value for its subscribers.

DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket Available to All Online

NFL fans, we have some good news and bad news. The good news is that DirecTV is finally making its NFL package available to anyone with a broadband connection, even non-subscribers to the satellite service. The bad news is that the package costs a whopping $350.

DirecTV Partners With Google TV Ads

This is one of the big partnerships Google (NSDQ: GOOG) TV Ads has been waiting for…. DirecTV (NYSE: DTV) is handing over some of its nati…

DirecTV Takes Football Mobile With NFL Sunday Ticket To-Go

DirecTV is looking to capitalize on its exclusive deal to show every NFL game, now making all those games available on PCs and mobile devices. The new NFL Sunday Ticket To-Go add-on allows subscribers to watch NFL games through mobile apps on a number of smartphones.

World Cup 2010: The 3-D TV Experience

Soccer fans will be able to see the world’s most popular sport like never before during this year’s World Cup in South Africa — if they have a 3-D TV and the right cable or satellite package, that is.

Vid-Biz: TWC-Fox, FCC, Avatar

Time Warner Cable, Fox Negotiations Near 11th Hour; cable subscribers could lose access to American Idol, The Simpsons and some of the…


Fantasy Football’s Very Real Digital Business

Given the number of people who play, there’s a good chance that you have a fantasy football team. For those who don’t play, fantasy football is huge. Really huge. And its influence is spreading into other sports. There is real money being spent on fantasy sports and there are real opportunities for savvy entrepreneurs to tap into this massive (and growing) phenomenon.

Vid-Biz: DirecTV, Fred, VOD

DirecTV to Provide Local Ads; satellite co. using INVIDI software; advertisers can dynamically target by household, street, political district and more; ads…

DTV Switch Sans Big Glitch

TV stations across the U.S. shut down their analog transmissions on Friday, and so far, the national switch to digital television appears…

At Long Last, the DTV Transition Is Upon Us

[qi:032] After a fourth-month delay, the DTV transition, which will enable several services to run on the 700 MHz spectrum that had…

Vid-Biz: DTV, iPhone, BT

2.8 Million Unprepared for the DTV Transition; the national analog shutoff happens Friday, younger African-American and Hispanic households most unready; elderly are…

Will AT&T Buy DirecTV?

Chase Carey, chief executive officer of DirecTV (s DTV), is leaving the satellite TV provider and going back to News Corp. (s…

Vid-Biz: DTV, Feds, Pioneer

DTV Update: Obama signs bill that delays the digital TV switch till June 12. (The LA Times); FCC prevents 123 stations from…

Not So Fast: House Defeats DTV Delay Bill

The debate over the date of the switch to digital TV continues: The House defeated the bill passed by the Senate on Monday, which would have…

Vid-Biz: White House, DTV, Boxee

White House Flip-Flops on YouTube Privacy Exemption; Obama’s administration had exempted the video-sharing site from federal rules relating to cookies and privacy,…

Vid-Biz: YouTube, Jaman, Kwiry

YouTube Mutes Infringing Music; instead of yanking the entire clip, just the infringing soundtrack is removed, resulting in a silent video. (Mashable)…

Vid-Biz:, Hulu, Apple

Sling Launches Video Portal; hardware maker’s features content from Warner Bros., Sony, MGM, CBS and more. (See our previous coverage.) Hulu…

And Now InDirecTV

DirecTV’s lack of a broadband pipe and its subsequent inability to offer video on demand is the satellite broadcasting service’s proverbial glass jaw. And their workaround for the VOD problem has all the makings of a disappointment.

DirecTV Launches Remote DVR Scheduling App

DirecTV (NYSE: DTV) has launched a mobile application which its subscribers can use to schedule their DVR remotely. Sky has been offering th…

DVR Software Firm ReplayTV Sold To DirecTV

ReplayTV, one of the pioneers in the DVR business and now in its faded glory, has been sold by its Japanese owner D&M Holdings to DirecTV, (…