CES recap: News & trends out of CES related to media and entertainment

Marjan Ingbar-Blumberg was at CES to represent the Dutch Media Innovators. She recaps the news and trends of CES, related tot media & entertainment.

5-8 January, some of the Dutch Media Innovators were at CES to gain new insights on consumer technology, expand their international network and get inspired by the latest developments. Marjan Inbar-Blumberg is the eyes of Dutch Media Innovators in the United States. She has visited many interested sessions during the CES. In this blogpost, she shares the news and trends out of CES, related to media & entertainment

VR was everywhere

Just as in 2016, VR was everywhere. Samsung revealed it sold 5 million virtual reality headsets. BBC Earth announced a VR partnership with Oculus and debuted its content, also Discovery had a dedicated space to try its VR app. Pretty much all major media brands showed new VR storytelling techniques and Intel demonstrated advances in underlying VR technology. The company held a press event (with 250 Oculus devices) showing the latest volumetric capture, VR live streaming and merged reality. As for live 360 degree video - intel showcased a live basketball game being broadcast from Indianapolis, choosing from multiple points of view as the action moved up and down the court. Also displayed was a game where players got cordless VR headsets as they moved around the room. A 3D scan of the room allows them to substitute real objects in the room by virtual objects.

HTC seems to have been the big winner at CES in terms of VR: unveiling a tracker which turns devises such as baseball bats or toy guns into trackable VR controllers, they also announced they are building a standalone wireless VR headset, a VR subscription service and a content marketplace for VR arcade operators. More here on Intel’s VR visions or a recap on all the VR product highlights in Variety.

Better Pixels

Get Ready for Your TV to Disappear: Companies like Samsung, LG and Sony tried again this year to outdo each other with biggest display, most advanced technology and largest amount of pixels but also showed a future in which the TV itself may fade away altogether. At the CES exhibit there were 4K HDR displays everywhere. The highlights:

OTT platforms

Comcast Technology Solutions introduced a multiplatform, direct-to-consumer platform for content players, and has tapped two vendors - Accedo and You.i TV - as its first duo of user interface/experience partners. According to Comcast this D2C offering will help programmers and other content partners accelerate the building, launch and management of OTT services. Comcast Wholesale and thePlatform recently rolled out theVideoPlatform, a unified system for the distribution of broadcast and digital video to multiple screens that poses competition for companies such as MLB Advanced Media, BAM Tech, Verizon Digital Media Services (VDMS), NeuLion, Ooyala, Akamai, AMS and IBM among others. More here

Hulu sneaks a Peek at OTT TV services: New Hulu Experience. Hulu just secured a deal with CBS and is in talks to add programming from Hulu part-owner NBC Universal, will launch a slimmed down pay TV service that will cost less than $40 per month, and tie in Hulu’s $8 per month SVOD service and a cloud DVR offering. Hulu’s new service will compete with traditional MVPD offerings as well as other virutal MVPD services such as Sling TV, Sony’s Playstation Vue and AT&T’s recently launched DirecTV Now. More here

T-Mobile’s CEO predicts the Dish Network won’t be Dish anymore by the end of 2017. Dish has struggled this year and lost thousands of satellite TV customers. Two years ago at CES it introduces Sling TV, an internet only TV services that according to some analysts estimate has grown to more than 1 million subscribers. More here

New business models

Linear TV needs new advertising models: while digital disruption of the TV business is eliminating some forms of mass media advertising it is creating new opportunities for programming and one-on-one marketing. Transition is going on from a pure wholesaler to a consumer focused business which offers an opportunity to diversity a network’s business and get closer to the consumer. NBC recently used live ads on a recent braodcast of Hairspray Live! On NBC where there was branded content, picture-in-picture ads that allowed viewers to watch behind the scenes of the show as well as an advertising. According to NBC this new way of advertising was a great success in terms of awareness, likeability and consumer experience.

Questions about Dutch Media Innovators, insights form CES or starting your own business in the United States? Do not hesitate to contact Marjan Blumberg, via marjan@dutchmediainnovators.com

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