EASEL TV VIDEO INDUSTRY NEWS AND COMMENTS

Catch up on Easel TV and video industry news, including our OTT VOD platform Suggested TV. Also, discover our thoughts and comments on the OTT Video industry.

What is an OTT video channel?

What is an OTT video channel?

OTT, VOD, TVODS, STB… Can you please say that again?

With the widespread use of video on the rise and it’s use by anyone from TV channel owners to retail and brands, the chances are much of the terminology and many of the acronyms used, are only now being introduced to into the boardroom of many companies for the first time.

With the responsibility for solutions being placed in the commercial product owner’s camp a simple reference point is always useful to fall back on.

Here are a few of the most commonly bandied about phrases and acronyms.

OTT or Over The Top means using the internet.  It refers to bypassing a broadcast technology (a TV transmitter – terrestrial, cable or satellite) to deliver video to a consumer. Other phrases that capture OTT channels are Cloud video (or cloud TV), Web video channels (or web TV) and Internet video (or internet TV) as they all fundamentally lead to the same thing.

VOD or Video On Demand is another commonly used term. Video on Demand implies a library of content that consumers can access on demand and, by definition, is usually pre-recorded content available at any time the consumer wants to watch it. Most OTT video channels or Cloud video channels are VOD or started out as VOD only (like Netflix and BBC iPlayer initially) but increasingly they are including the streaming of live events and live broadcast streams (like HBO Now, ITV Player and recently BBC iPlayer).  So a live video feed may also form part (or indeed may make up all) of a OTT video channel.

A live event is distinct from a live broadcast stream as the ‘event’ is usually referring to something happening in real-time, e.g. a sports event, music concert or news. By contrast, and to add a little confusion, many live broadcast streams contain only pre-recorded video content e.g. almost any soap, drama or film.

VOD also comes in flavours; FVOD, TVOD, SVOD, AVOD, BVOD are the principle ones, though many others are made up to suit a given situation.

FVOD; Free Video on Demand.

TVOD; Transactional Video on Demand. This usually means the rental of a video for a set period. This should not be confused (though increasing it is) with e-commerce transactions for goods (e.g. brand video channel selling goods). Whilst e-commerce is a transaction and a way of monetising a video channel, this is usually seen, and referred to, as an in-app purchase.

SVOD; Subscription Video on Demand. The subscription is usually applied on a monthly (or annual) basis and usually (e.g. Netflix) allows you to watch as much of everything available as you want.

AVOD; Advertising Video on Demand. Usually, free content (though not always) that plays pre-roll and mid-roll video ads during the video (e.g. ITV Player).

BVOD; usually means Business Video on Demand though I have seen it used as both Brand Video on Demand and Broadcaster Video on Demand. This could include anything from a brand entertainment channel (like Redbull) to a private video channel for employee training and company activities.

And then there is EST; Electronic Sell Through. This is effectively buy-to-own, though legally it is usually a ‘lifetime’ subscription where the lifetime may have a limit e.g. 30 years or even when you leave the service (a case of read the small print).

Apps or channels. A video channel denotes the experience (that being akin to a TV linear channel in format and presentation) but the actual implementation and way to get into the channel, on most devices, is likely to be through an App (an OTT App).  I say most devices because as well as a series of apps on devices it is likely that the channel will also be available in a browser on a desktop (PC or Mac) and tablets and mobile browsers (iOS and Android).

It is also worth touching on devices categorisations.

Smart TV – usually a broadband connected TV with an App Store, e.g. Samsung Smart TV, LG.

Android TV – a smart TV that uses the Android TV environment to host apps e.g. Sony

Streaming TV device – an independent device for OTT TV and video, e.g. Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast

STB (Set Top Box) usually denotes a Pay TV operator or Telco TV box.

Opera TV – a smart TV, STB or Streaming media device that uses an Opera TV browser environment to host apps e.g. Virgin Media:TiVo and Freesat

An OTT video channel could also be built in-house or use an external OTT platform or OTT provider, which could be offered through a SaaS video provider (Software as a Service).

Curzon receive BAFTA

Curzon to receive BAFTA award

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has announced that Curzon and Curzon Home Cinema will receive the award for Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema BAFTA at the EE British Academy Film Awards on Sunday 12 February at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

The Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema award is presented annually in honour of Michael Balcon, the British film producer known for his work with Ealing Studios. Previous recipients include Mike Leigh, Kenneth Branagh, Derek Jarman, Mary Selway, Ridley and Tony Scott, Working Title Films, Lewis Gilbert, the Harry Potter series of films, John Hurt, Peter Greenaway, Tessa Ross and BBC Films. Angels Costumes received the award last year.

The award recognises Curzon’s contribution through its cinemas, distribution label, and video-on-demand platform Curzon Home Cinema.

Easel TV is proud to be an important part in the development, design and continual evolution of the Curzon Home Cinema platform and look forward to this partnership continuing over the coming years.

Click here to read the full BAFTA announcement.

NBCU Hayu

Easel TV launches the NBCU hayu SVOD TV app

Easel TV has launched the reality TV app Hayu on multiple TV platforms, including Virgin Media TiVo, Amazon Fire TV, EE/NetGem and Apple TV.

Produced by NBCU, the Hayu app provides viewers with a large catalogue of American reality TV, including new content added the day after the American broadcast.

Easel TV continue to work with NBCU as we explore additional TV platforms and evolve the existing apps to provide more features and functionality.

Phil Mordecai of Curzon Home Cinema

Curzon Home Cinema win Content Innovation Award 2016

Curzon Home Cinema wins in 2016 with the Content Innovations Award for the OTT TV Initiative of the Year using Easel TV’s OTT VOD platform, Suggested TV.

Suggested TV is Easel TV’s end-to-end OTT VOD platform, enabling content owners to set up their own multi-screen OTT VOD service, easily and cost effectively.

And the winner is... Easel TV

Growing Business Awards – Digital Champion Winner

Easel TV wins the Digital Champion award at the Growing Business Awards 2015. The “Digital Champion” award recognises UK-registered businesses that are challenging traditional industry and business practices, building a successful business on the back of such disruptive activity; and acting as a champion for the new digital economy.

Thanks to everyone who has been a part of this Easel TV journey, there’s a long, exciting path yet to travel!

Easel TV specialises in video software. Suggested TV is our end-to-end OTT VOD platform, enabling content owners to set up their own multi-screen OTT VOD service, easily and cost effectively.

 

 

Content Innovations Awards 2015

Easel TV wins Cloud TV Initiative of the year

Easel TV added another award to our meeting room shelf by picking up the Cloud TV Initiative of the year award at the Content Innovation Awards 2015 in Cannes. We are of course very proud to have again beaten the great BBC iPlayer with our Curzon Home Cinema app.

The Curzon Home Cinema service is powered by Suggested TV, Easel TV’s end-to-end OTT VOD platform, enabling content owners to set up their own multi-screen OTT VOD service, easily and cost effectively.

Easel TV partners with Airwave

Easel TV, the multi-screen video software company, has launched its service for Airwave’s hotel TV service, Airtime.

The service, based on Easel TV’s Suggested TV platform and delivered to Samsung Hospitality TVs, will be made available in selected hotels across the UK now and globally from 2016 giving guests the freedom and choice to search and find programmes and movies to watch on demand in their hotel room on the hospitality TV.

Suggested TV is Easel TV’s cloud-based software-as-a-service solution for multi-screen content delivery with a televisual user experience. The latest version, launched at IBC, gives more control to content owners with improved analytics, enhanced reporting, enhanced security and the ability to run promotional campaigns.

Airwave is one of Europe’s leading suppliers, installers and integrators of digital hotel televisions, signage and audiovisual equipment, providing digital ready televisions to hotels, hospitals, student accommodations and commercial buildings.

Bill Scott, Chief Operating and Commercial Officer of Easel TV, said: “Building this service for Airwave illustrates the versatility of our Suggested TV platform. It gives Airwave a cloud-based alternative to traditional hotel TV systems that makes it easier for hotels to install and removes operational and support issues – there are no servers in the hotel. Airwave now has the tools to provide a valuable service to hotel guests for in-room entertainment with flexible pricing and promotional tools for multiple global markets. At IBC this year we will showcase this service on our stand along with other services we have built such as the award-winning Curzon Home Cinema platform.”

Richard Excell, Programming Operations Manager for Airwave, said: “After an extensive search process for a technical partner that ticked all the boxes, Easel TV, with its existing pedigree in the market, made the choice quite simple. They share our vision of a seamless end-to-end user experience with stringent content management but simple deployment and usability.  The project management has been made simple by Easel TV’s ability to take on board new ideas and execute them in a timely, professional manner. We are both excited by the prospect of Airtime and as development continues on exciting new features we believe that Airtime will be a game changer in the future of hospitality pay TV.”

Curzon Home Cinema launches on Virgin Media TiVo

Curzon Home Cinema launches on Virgin Media TiVo

Curzon Home Cinema’s independent cinema app designed and developed by Easel TV has launched on Virgin Media’s TiVo.

David Bouchier, Chief Digital Entertainment Officer at Virgin Media said: “We’re delighted to bring Curzon Home Cinema’s films and curated selections to our customers across the country. We’re passionate about keeping people entertained with an ever-increasing movie offering which is why TiVo is the perfect home for Curzon’s app.”

Phil Mordecai, Director of Curzon Home Cinema said: “We are extremely excited to be bringing 80 years of cinema expertise to Virgin Media TiVo customers, who can now enjoy a Curzon Cinema experience in the comfort of their own home.”

The service is based on Easel TV’s Suggested TV platform and also delivers a virtual cinema experience on Mac, PC, iOS, Samsung Smart TV, Amazon Fire TV and Freesat Freetime.

Curzon Home Cinema on Amazon Fire TV

Easel TV has launched the Curzon Home Cinema service on Amazon Fire TV. Curzon Home Cinema is now available on Virgin Media TiVo, Samsung Smart TV, Freesat Freetime TV services.

Curzon Home Cinema is powered by Suggested TV, Easel TV’s end-to-end OTT VOD platform, enabling content owners to set up their own multi-screen OTT VOD service, easily and cost effectively.

Curzon App wins award

The Curzon Home Cinema app won “Connected Content Service of the Year” at Connected Consumer Awards 2015. This is the second time Easel TV’s Suggested TV platform has be awarded by Connected Consumer.

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