Tag Archives: Quartz

Theaters are boycotting Netflix’s first feature film, which is great for Netflix

photo: Netflix, Quartz

Over the last decade, VOD has become a viable means for commercial success outside the restrictive studio-megaplex model. […] While a handful of indie films do make it to megaplex screens, most people see such films at home through VOD, a market that has grown by around 4% a year. Subscription VOD has grown even faster, at about 8% each year, and it’s this market for over-the-top content (OTT)–media delivered via the internet, rather than cable subscriptions–that Netflix is after. – Matthew Jordan, Quartz

The next frontier in television: TVs that watch you back

photo: Alexandre Meneghini, Reuters

[T]hanks to software developed by a media startup called Affectiva. Researchers used viewers’ home webcams to monitor the facial movements of more than 1,200 people as they watched advertisements for sweets, pet supplies and groceries. The model accurately determined whether they enjoyed the video, according to the study published in the peer-reviewed IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing this month. The system could potentially be harnessed by streaming services like Netflix, says Daniel McDuff, Affectiva’s principal scientist. – Olivia Goldhill, Quartz

Netflix continues its quest for global domination with four crucial new markets in Asia

photo: Quartz

Netflix is expanding aggressively in Asia. The company confirmed today that it will launch in Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and South Korea by early 2016. […] South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore collectively are home to 85 million people, and there’s plenty of competition. Local video streamers including China’s LeTV and iQiyi have been targeting Hong Kong, and local broadcaster HKTV has re-invented itself as an online TV channel. Singapore is home to iFlix and the upcoming HOOQ, which is affiliated with Singtel. – Josh Horwitz, Quartz

MTV desperately wants to reach millennials, but the VMAs are proof they’re doing it wrong

photo: Mario Anzuoni, Reuters

I was willing to tolerate Miley and her tongue in order to enjoy the rest of this year’s show—maybe she’s this generation’s Max Headroom?—and figured it would be no problem, since MTV knows millennials don’t pay for cable and watch everything on the Internet. I was reassured by announcements of an “All Access Livestream” on MTV’s website, and at 9 pm EST, I opened my laptop. What I found—instead of the show everyone was already tweeting about—was a grid of low-quality live feeds, including one featuring a woman who appeared to be a publicist unaware of being filmed, walking down a corridor, which was as riveting as it sounds. – Jenni Avins, Quartz

Shane Dawson: The most popular, successful, comedian you’ve never heard of

photo: Lucy Johnston

It’s easy to dismiss YouTube and its stars as anything but the juggernaut it’s become. Most of us use it to watch news clips, conveniently hear our favorite music (sorry Tidal), or just to pass the time at work, the way we used to spend evenings channel-surfing. But to at least a generation, YouTube is its own ecosystem, with stars as big as any in movies or on television. – Jeff Slate, Quartz

Japan is covering Mount Fuji with free Wi-Fi

photo: Itsuo Inouye, AP Photo

Connecting to Mount Fuji’s eight Wi-Fi hotspots, including in three cottages and on its 3,776-meter (12,389-foot) summit, requires a user name and password that is available in fliers provided in foreign languages. After logging in, users get 72 hours of the wireless service, provided by NTTドコモ(NTT DOCOMO). – Steve Mollman, Quartz

The Mindy Project is heading to Hulu

Hulu already owns the exclusive rights to stream the show’s first three seasons on demand as part of a subscription, and The Mindy Project is one of the most popular scripted shows on the service. “Mindy has been a beloved member of the Hulu family, so this deal is a natural extension of our relationship,” Craig Erwich, senior vice president and head of content for Hulu, said in a statement. – Alice Truong, Quartz

Investors think streaming could take music back to its glory days

[P. Schoenfeld Asset Management] argues there will be some 277 million streaming music subscribers globally by 2020 (that number is 5.5% of the predicted global smartphone customer base in 2020, which PSAM thinks will be 5.03 billion). These subscribers alone, it goes on to say, will generate $16.2 billion in revenue—more than the entire global recorded music industry (including physical sales and downloads) is expected to generate this year ($14 billion). – John McDuling, Quartz

The music industry wants to fight the internet again—and it’s probably going to lose

A generation of consumers who grew up with illicit file-sharing services like Napster have been conditioned to expect access to music for nothing. Spotify thinks that turning them back into paying customers is a delicate process. Erecting pay barriers too soon could turn them back to piracy. As CEO Daniel Ek explained in a blog post earlier this year, “If we want to drive people to pay for music, we have to compete with free to get their attention in the first place.” So the growth of Spotify’s paid service depends heavily on its free option. […] But Spotify isn’t the only one feeling the heat. The industry has been trying to crush Pandora, the free online radio service that music labels think pays them too little in royalties. And there are even hints that they are beginning to turn against YouTube. Up until now, no-one has really been brave enough to take on the Google-owned video upload site, which attracts more than 1 billion sets of eyeballs each month and is very popular for music videos. “YouTube gets a free ride,” bemoans Merlin’s Caldas. – John McDuling, Quartz
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