Category Archives: Free-To-Air

TV Reaches Tipping Point in 2014

digital-trends-20142014 is the year TV will change most dramatically, according to Business Insider and eMarketer, and reach a “tipping point”, which is where is the point at which a series of small changes or incidents becomes significant enough to cause a larger, more important change.

Specifically, 50% or more US internet users, will consume digital TV online; through mobile devices, tablets and laptops in the US this year. The significance of this metric is explained by the Verge, who makes a compelling case a that US Network TV is nearing collapse.

Interestingly, no one is thinking to measure how much second screen or media stacking could be having an effect on the how much consumers are ad skipping. Nielsen themselves are giving the numbers. When do you think viewers actually use their mobile devices? During commercials of course.

• In US, 77% use TV & internet simultaneously (Nielsen)

• 86% of US smartphone and 88% of tablet owners use it while watching TV once a month (Nielsen)

• 45% use their tablet while watching TV daily (Nielsen)

• 44% of total tablet usage is while watching TV (Nielsen)

• 62% of TV viewers pick up the phone as soon as TV advertising break starts. (Nielsen)

As smartphones and tablets become more ubiquitous, this behaviour is only going increase. Not only are audiences shrinking, but those that are still there are, between PVR and media stacking, are apparently not watching or paying attention much to 30 second spots.

Full Story at the Verge: http://www.theverge.com/2014/1/11/5299736/is-american-network-tv-facing-collapse

 

 

All 7 MediaCorp FTA Channels in Digital

mediacorp-logoAccording to MediaCorp owned ChannelNews Asia, on Monday December 16th 2013, all seven free-to-air TV channels are now available in digital (DVB-T2 format). Additionally, four out of the seven channels are now being broadcast in High Definition (HD) (Channel 5, Channel 8, Suria and Vasantham) while the remaining three (Channel NewsAsia, Channel U and okto) will be upgraded to HD by 2016.

In a statement on Monday, MediaCorp said:

Residents in Bukit Batok are the first in Singapore to receive these channels as the estate is now covered by the new digital broadcast infrastructure. Over the next two to three years, coverage will be expanded progressively to enable all residential homes to receive digital TV signals — Jurong East and Ang Mo Kio are next, and are expected to be ready to receive digital TV early next year.

MediaCorp Deputy CEO Chang Long Jong said: “Besides better picture and sound quality, digital TV allows MediaCorp to consider rolling out other value-add services and features for the discerning audiences of today such as closed captions and multi-language subtitles.”

“With digital TV, MediaCorp will also be able to offer time-shifted services, which will provide an alternative choice for viewers who miss out on their favourite TV programmes due to work or lifestyle commitments. More information on these value-add services will be announced soon,” Mr Chang added.

The article went on to say:

To get digital TV, non pay-TV viewers will need to buy a digital set-top box and an antenna for their existing TV set. The two items cost S$129 in total — only one model each is available on the market for now.

Pay-TV subscribers are already able to watch digital TV, and do not need to change their set-ups.

The public can continue to receive free-to-air TV channels in analogue broadcast as existing analogue TV signals will continue to be broadcast alongside the digital TV signals for at least another two years.

Full story here: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/all-mediacorp-tv-channels/924340.html

Here is a rollout-map for when DVB-T2 can be expected in each location throughout Singapore: http://www.mediacorp.sg/digitaltv/

Two Hong Kong FTA Broadcast Licenses Granted

fta-govBig television shake-up in Hong Kong as the government approves initial permits for two companies to obtain the highly coveted Free-to-Air broadcast license. The last time a Free-To Air broadcast license was granted in HK was nearly 40 years ago, to a company named Commercial Television Ltd., which went out of business 3 years after.

The initial approval for the FTA licenses was won by and I-Cable (Fantastic TV) and PCCW, (NowTV), which is one of the largest IPTV providers worldwide, and the first to pass the 1 million subscriber mark nearly four years ago.

While both PCCW and I-Cable shares jumped on the news, Hong Kong Television Network Ltd. (HKTV, Wai-kay’s Hong Kong Television Network), saw its shares dropping more than 31% and said they will cut 320 jobs after its FTA permit application was rejected.

According to sources at SCMP:

A senior government source said a consultant’s report had shown HKTV, previously known as City Telecom, to be the weakest applicant, and that Exco approved the licences “on merit with no political considerations”.

But the rejection of HKTV’s application, which was against the Broadcasting Authority’s earlier recommendation that all three licences be granted, prompted a swift backlash. By 1.30am today, a Facebook page calling upon the government to issue a licence to HKTV had attracted some 256,000 “likes”. Internet users were also preparing a protest on Sunday.

Asked if the deviation from the Broadcasting Authority’s recommendation would be against procedural justice, So said the authority made recommendations not decisions. He said Exco had considered “a basket of criteria” including programme planning, technical soundness, investment and public opinion.

But he refused to explain why HKTV was considered inferior to its competitors. HKTV can’t appeal to Exco against the decision, but it can file a judicial review in court, he said.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong already has two FTA broadcasters (TVB and ATV), both are now challenging the government about why two contracts were awarded at all. They both fought against the governments consideration of 3 potential new licenses, and it seems that they at least for now, won the battle against Ricky Wong’s HKTV, (formerly called City Telecom, and now called HKTV, Wai-kay’s Hong Kong Television Network).

According to Bloomberg:

“We estimate new operators could launch the free-to-air TV services within 6-12 months and new competition could start as early as 2014,” Mandy Chan, an analyst at Merrill Lynch, wrote in a report. “We expect TVB to face challenges in keeping its near monopolistic hold of the Hong Kong free-to-air TV market.”

The awards to I-Cable’s Fantastic Television Ltd. and PCCW’s HK Television Entertainment Co. will double the number of free-to-air TV operators and bring in more investment, Commerce Secretary Gregory So said yesterday.

“This will not only provide more program choices for the audience, but also create more job opportunities in the creative industries,” So said at yesterday’s briefing.

Television Broadcasts’ flagship channel has a 93 percent audience share during prime time on weekdays, according to the company’s 2012 interim report.

Both TVB and ATV’s FTA licenses are due to expire in 2015, forcing them to re-apply in order to maintain it. Ricky Wong, the Telco entrepreneur in charge of Hong Kong Television Network (HKTV) denied that he will re-apply for an FTA license or acquire either TVB or ATV at that time.