Category Archives: Cloud DVR

Cloud DVR

Aereo Supreme Court Case Update

Barry Diller, Chairman of IAC and primary backer of Aereo, is more confident now than ever that Aereo will win the Supreme Court case after considering much of the deliberation, although he admits he “has an axe to grind”.

In a CNN Interview entitled Diller on Aereo, Diller states: Supreme Court Justice Roberts asked the question, “Are you [Aereo] only doing this to get around copyright laws?”. Diller’s response is that such questioning is not only incorrect, but in fact, what Aereo is doing, is complying with the law.

More from the CNN Interview:

He [Diller] complained about some of the media coverage of the case, calling it “dopey.” And he disagreed with Chief Justice John Roberts’ depiction of Aereo as a “gimmick.”

“Rather than saying it’s a gimmick, what we did is constructed a technological advance within law as we understood it,” Diller said.

Ever since Aereo was introduced in early 2012, Diller has said that there is “no plan B” if the courts conclude that the service is violating the law. He affirmed that point of view in the “Reliable Sources” interview.

Asked whether he thought Aereo would ultimately lose, he said, “I think there’s a 50% chance it’ll lose. Of course, yes. Always, I thought that … But I did not think that it would become this important a moment in the world of technology.”

He added that “Aereo, if it’s successful, together with other services, may change and give competition to the closed system of satellite or cable. That’s what it may do.”

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Comcast Xfinity X2 Set-Top Box

comcast-x2Comcast is innovating. Their new software platform running on the Xfinity X2 next-generation set-top box has had over 1200 updates within the last 12 months. and their messaging is similar to that of Right Brain Interface; Fast, Smart, Easy, Personalized. According to Brian Roberts:

“As we look around the cloud/web ecosystem, the Winners are companies who can integrate across all devices, across all platforms, with a common interface, and they make it easy and fun to use.”

Here is a comprehensive video overview of Comcast new Xfinity X2:

Operators Seek Innovation to Survive

20131214_WBC037Comcast is arguably America’s most powerful media business since it controls both what people watch on television as well as the the pipes that deliver the TV content and Internet.

To remain on top, it is seeking new ways deliver TV content to meet the demand from their subscriber base concerning how they want to watch TV and consume their entertainment content.

In a recent article in the economist entitled Thinking Outside the Set-Top Box, the direction Comcast is just now moving towards lays out like a blueprint for what Right Brain Interface has already design, developed and built, with their product called bhaalu. Portions of quotation below highlighted in bold underscore these points.

Comcast has responded by trying to resemble the firms that could unseat it, offering more interactivity, personalisation and portability. “Television is going to change more in the next five years than it has in the last 50,” says Brian Roberts. Comcast executives talk about “apps” for the television and rolling out innovations every three to six months. The firm is paying particular attention to its user “interface”, or what, until recently, was called a TV guide. Comcast’s is now arranged not numerically by channel, but alphabetically by programme, by network and type of content. Couch potatoes even less inclined to effort can download an app to their iPhone and shout commands at it to locate shows.

Comcast’s new set-top box is “cloud-based”, adding to the potential for flexibility: films and programmes stored in the cloud can be watched on any device. It tracks viewing history and recommends programmes accordingly, much like Netflix. Comcast has made it easier for TV-watchers to find their way to full seasons of episodes that are available on-demand so people can “binge” on shows.

Other pay-TV providers are experimenting with new features, and some have approached Comcast to license its technology. One popular idea is “TV Everywhere”, which makes it possible for pay-TV subscribers to watch live and on-demand programmes on their mobile devices wherever they like. It has started slowly but is taking off as more content-owners agree to license the digital rights to their programmes. Tools like this may help Comcast and its rivals justify their high prices and convince people to stick with their television package.

Full story here: http://www.economist.com/news/business/21591600-americas-largest-cable-company-becoming-more-firms-it-battling-against?fsrc=scn/tw_ec/thinking_outside_the_set_top_box

Singapore’s New Universal Set-Top Box

Several years ago, the Singapore government Media Development Authority (MDA) and Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) put out a joint tender, seeking a vendor to create a universal set top box. The project was called NIMS, which stands for Next-generation Interactive Multimedia application and Service.

For a variety of reasons, the project never succeeded. But it is of interest to note of the original tender outlining the specifications of a universal set top box and the vast amount of thought and work that went into the original project.

So why did it fail?

Alfred Siew of Techgoodnu made a compelling case explaining why a universal set top box in Singapore was a “fantasy piece of equipment” and unpractical.

Thus it’s a good thing that Singapore’s indulgence of a common set-top box is over. It’s really a fantasy piece of equipment that would not have done much to make the market more competitive and which would have shown a regulatory zeal that exceeded practical considerations.

A member of the Hardware Zone Forum speculated that the one of the reasons for the projects failure, aside from “biting off more than they could chew”, was because the new Cross-Carriage act eliminated the problem of needing multiple set-top boxes:

If cluttering one’s home with multiple set-top boxes is a problem, then the problem is solved with the cross-carriage rule. And the universal set-top box project – dubbed Next-Generation Interactive Multimedia, Applications and Services (Nims) – would cease to matter. But Nims also had other goals – so many, they proved impossible to fulfil.

Of course, this well written post was published last year, before the SingTel’s reluctance to practice the cross-carriage act and provide StarHub with EPL content.

But credit has to be given to the IDA and MDA for attempting such a big project, which solves many problems for Singapore television content consumers. They were ambitious in the breadth and depth of specifications they put forward. And it didn’t help that there exists such a competitive environment between the primary TV Operators, who were the players most capable of delivering on such a project.

Say Hello to Bhaalu, Singapore’s new Universal Set-Top Box. Bhaalu does not adhere to all of the government specs, but it comes close. Most importantly, bhaalu delivers on what the consumers need most, rather than what the government or existing Telco’s need.

What do consumers need? 1.) Super easy intuitive relaxing and enjoyful navigation through TV content. 2.) One set-top box that they can use to watch ALL of their TV, regardless if it is MediaCorp FTA, StarHub Cable TV or SingTel Mio TV. 3.) One device that records and time-shifts ALL of their TV, going back in time for up to 3 MONTHS, so you never miss your favourite TV shows ever again, and 4.) TV Everywhere capabilities, to watch your channels where-ever you are located, on most any mobile device, at any time.

Bhaalu is the future of television in Singapore, and the future has arrived.

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Bhaalu to Showcase at Chaos Asia Singapore

Right Brain Interface Singapore will provide an overview of bhaalu at Chaos Asia 2013 this November 9th and 10th at St James Power Station and Neverland II in Singapore. Receive a S$10 discount off the already affordable event ticket price by using the promotion code “conton” when registering. You can register here: http://peatix.com/event/20180/right-brain-interfaceThe Facebook page is located here: https://www.facebook.com/events/203531529799167/. Please come say “hi” to me, and I will gladly provide you with much more details than I will be able to fit into my three minute presentation.  Hope to see you there!

VOD Versus DVR Industry Discussion

black-arrow-AdWeek-panel-2As the Fall TV season kicks off, several TV industry insiders provide a round-table discussion concerning how the TV landscape has changed over the past year. The event was hosted by MLB Advanced Media. Here are some highlights:

  • Video On Demand is in 60% of households and viewership has grown 40% in the past year.
  • Binge Viewing is an absolute phenomena, we have entered the golden age of serialized dramas.
  • DVR versus VOD: This topic was a big focus of the video. VOD is the preferred technology for monetizing, DVR gives viewers control over the box, which makes it harder to monetize. DVR puts immense pressure on the eco-system, because consumers are capable of zapping through advertising. Healthy advertising revenue stream is a critical component. The way to achieve is through robust on-demand offering.
  • Multiscreen is also changing the landscape, viewers want to consumer their TV content through mobile devices at any location, at any time convenient with their schedule. Video on demand and DVR technology offers that.
  • VOD has been around for a decade, but TV Everywhere is the shiny new toy getting all the attention.

For more perspective visit this article at the Black Arrow website, and/or watch the full video below.

Bhaalu Social CVR Launched in Belgium

Following is a condensed English language transcription. Here is the original story.

ig-bhaalu-iconA new social & mobile version of bhaalu, the Collaborative Video Recorder, sees daylight this morning, as it is officially released in Belgium. Bhaalu is a new and innovative consumer electronics product, called a Collaborative Video Recorder ( CVR ), which offers a relaxed and convenient television experience.

Bhaalu CVR allows you to easily recommend TV shows and engage in social discussions about television programs through Facebook and Twitter. Recordings are also made immediately available via bhaalu’s mobile application, so you can playback your TV recordings at anytime, from anywhere, on most mobile devices, such as a tablet or smart phone.

With the new social & mobile release of bhaalu, members can recommend programmes to friends and comment directly about those TV programmes, on Facebook and Twitter. In addition, the bhaalu website has been completely revised, allowing the public to purchase a bhaalu device for watching TV on the big screen at home, which of course, also includes the social aspects.

The principle behind the bhaalu Collaborative Video Recorder ( CVR ), is that members of the community work together to build and maintain the cloud recordings, that is made possible through the technology created by Right Bain Interface, and the community’s membership fees.

Bhaalu members can easily collaborate and thus, engage in a better viewing experience for themselves and each other, and at a reasonable cost. By sharing in the costs of the cloud recording infrastructure, without sharing the private viewing screen, consumers can record and playback anything they legally are entitled to view by law ( provided those channels are already supported by the common bhaalu hardware ).

Note to editors:

Are you a journalist and would like to see a personal demonstration of bhaalu? If so, please just contact us to indicate your interest.

About Right Brain Interface and bhaalu:

Right Brain Interface develops and commercializes bhaalu, the world’s first Collaborative Video Recorder ( CVR ), giving viewers a next-generation television viewing platform. With bhaalu consumers transform their existing linear, scheduled, and on-demand TV experience into a real-time personalized Catch-All TV Everywhere experience.

The bhaalupersonal video recorder allows viewers to record their full TV schedule (if supported) and re-watch all their TV channels while on the go, where they have legitimate access. The intuitive user interface of bhaalu enables the discovery of programmes while offering viewers a relaxed, personal and social video universe where they can choose where and when to watch their recordings privately, whether on their big screen TV or a smaller second screen.

Bhaalu is currently being tested in a private community with approximately 1000 beta and commercial users in Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, the U.S. and Singapore. This first users have already responded with excitement and enthusiasm, indicating the bhaalu viewing experience should not be missed.

In July 2013 Right Brain announced the successful placement of € 6 million capital to a broad group of investors from the Belgian civil society and business world. Right Brain also announced just last week that Jo Van Gorp, former CEO of Telenet, as COO.

The headquarters for Right Brain Interface nv is located at the Corda Campus in Hasselt, Belgium. Right Brain Interface also has regional offices in Germany , New York and Singapore.

Facebook and Twitter Battle Over Social TV

Panasonic-Twitter-FacebookThe battle for Social TV heats up as Breaking Bad’s final episode generated over 5.5 million interactions from more than 3 million Facebook users. (The entire previous season overall produced 23 million Facebook interactions from 11 million users.). Meanwhile, Twitter had 1.47 million tweets from 682,000+ uniques for the same show.

What do these numbers mean? In a nutshell, It means that the number of users who start watching a particular TV show based on social media conversations takes place more often in Facebook than on Twitter. In fact, by more than 2 to 1.

But as Sarah Perez of TechCrunch points out, the comparison between Facebook and Twitter concerning social TV is more of an apples/oranges comparison than apples/apples.

“…Facebook is much bigger than Twitter: 1.15 billion monthly actives versus Twitter’s 200+ million. One could argue its numbers for almost anything will be bigger. But really, it’s Facebook’s looser definition of active engagement that makes comparing its figures to Twitter’s a problem. Facebook, you see, counts nearly any engagement with its content among its “interactions” – it includes not only those posting status updates themselves, but also others who then like, comment or re-share that post to their own networks of friends.

Facebook counting a “like” as an “interaction” is like Twitter counting a “favorite.” It’s not an ideal metric to lump in with Facebook posts or re-shares, but, rather, should be treated as a separate category of interaction. After all, there are a number of reasons why you may like someone’s Facebook status, and it’s not always directly related to the TV content they’ve shared.”

Twitter is a platform that collects a massive amount of data on all formats of digital media consumption. It experimented in the past with a #Music app, which is mostly dead at this point, but they learned from the experience, and as a result, will soon be launching a new television-oriented experience called #TV, which just might put it in the dominate position.

“Leveraging the real-time nature of Twitter will be instrumental to the success or failure of Twitter and TV. Facebook is gunning hard for the television market, and has been releasing big numbers surrounding ‘interactions’ generated by Likes and comments. Depending on how you interpret those numbers, Twitter either has its work cut out for it or has little to worry about.

Twitter has been working on this TV thing in a dedicated fashion for quite a while. It made itself into a bona-fide internet TV ratings system with Nielsen and recently started rolling out ad-targeting programs to woo TV money. It’s convinced that it has more to offer to TV than Facebook, and Facebook is just as convinced of the opposite. I doubt this tit-for-tat will be settled soon, but there’s a strong  case to be made that Twitter is actually in the better position, for now.”

One example of a #TV feature twitter is developing is a DVR-like control over the flow of live twitter feeds around live TV events.

“Dick Costolo, Twitter’s CEO, is reportedly working on a social media DVR. The aim of the project is to highlight the best moments and reactions from live events, and then allow users to replay the content at a later time. “Right now, you get purely the reverse chronological order of the tweets. It would be nice to see things like a graphic of spikes in the conversation. And be able to scroll back to that time and see what happened at that particular moment,” Costolo said.

It’s easy to see why Twitter is so successful when placed alongside live TV. Take the NBA playoffs for example, which recently came to a close this past week. Twitter was a delicate mix of humorous commentary, serious reflection, in-game photos, and an expression of either pure elation or defeat when the final buzzer sounded.”.

While twitter does not have the same user base numbers as Facebook, it has a platform that allows to be more vertically focused, such as Television, (#TV) and it is aggressively pursuing these niches to dominate the social interactions for each vertical.

It will be interesting to see how this battle develops over time.

STP for OTT and IPTV Projects

ABOX42-NORMALA new player from Germany in the development of Television Set Top Boxes has entered the scene. The company is called ABox42, and their product is an STB platform for IPTV,  OTT and CloudTV projects.

The ABOX42 B and M Series Smart STB product lines offers both, cost effective and high performance STBs for even the most demanding IPTV, OTT and CloudTV services for all kinds of applications, requirements and feature sets.

ABOX42 saw that the convergence of Internet and TV is opening up new opportunities for new business models in the OTT field for already established operators as well as for new market players.

In this changed world of TV and new Internet technologies ABOX42 has become a leading player and experienced manufacturer of next gerneration OTT and IPTV STBs.

ABOX42 has 4 years expertise and knowledge of managing end-user mass-market products. ABOX42 is specialized in developing customized STB solutions for international customers and has already deployed over 100 OTT services.