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Oct 17, 2014

Second and third screens in SouthEastAsia

Around nine out of 10 commonly engage with two screens simultaneously, and as many as eight in 10 digital consumers in the region engage with three screens simultaneously. 

Does this question really matter to anyone (except TV): which screen is first, which is second, which is third?

Governments don't get what internet security means

At least parts of our governments. The FBI complains about Apple, Google and all others building encryptions without any "government backdoor". Not knowing that a government back door is nothing else than the same backdoor criminals would use.


Bruce Schneier (someone who understands "a bit" about internet security):

HBO, CBS streaming services

It's all about the customer relation, and in my eyes most TV stations are still missing this, HBO and CBS are announcing standalone streaming services. Keen to see how these will be able to support their cost and organization structure once linear TV / TV by appointment becomes a niche, but hey - do they have any other choice?

Update: "make that three" - Univision joins both.

Is a software SIM coming - from Apple?

In my eyes more interesting than an iPad Air that is thinner and faster and all that - Apple's announcement of a software SIM where you can switch carriers on the go for best reception and data plans. Although the article states that the physical hardware SIM is too attractive to be severly threatened now - with subsidies for phones - for the future, this could be the end of the few remaining dreams of carriers to more than just a utility, a connectivity supplier. once i can quickly switch to any offer made to me in real time by any network provider, you will see that once connectivity is given, price will be the only thing that really matters. For carriers, this will mean that cost leadership will be essential.

Oct 15, 2014

Dangers of connected devices

I am so exited about wearable technology, connected devices and all this - but sometimes also a bit scared. As always, legislation struggles to keep up with innovation pace and technology development. This may lead to companies behaving in a way that they exploit anything the legal 'grey zones' allow them to, in this case (link below) it is about Nintendo and its Wii U and some auto loan/rental companies. Good thing there's institutions like the EFF, which I will continue to support, even if I am in Germany and we have similar organizations - but in the digital world, lobbying for citizen and customer rights in the US probably has more impact on my daily life than lobbying at home. Another reason why legislation has to be faster and more adaptive. Especially in a world where products that I buy can be remotely controlled because they are connected with the web.

Oct 7, 2014

If content is king, live sports is the emperor-tenno-overlord

Digital and on-demand may kill linear TV and 'TV by appointment' one day. But there's one appointment that everyone will continue to make: live sports. How else could you explain the enormous, gigantic,  unbelievable 9 year deal (2016-2025) the NBA has just sealed with ESPN and TNT?

It's size is about 24 Instagrams or roughly 1.3 whatsapps: 24 billion USD. That's over 2.5 Twitch's per season. Just to put it into perspective.

I have no idea how you can earn that kind of money back with TV advertising only, even on an international scale since ESPN/TNT seem to have bought the right to market the license to international TV stations. Probably, a good part of the deal will include revenues from League Pass and I am keen to see which other digital products will follow.
This is a monster of a deal and it shows how much the value of content that can reach masses will continue to rise.

Oct 6, 2014

Does Facebook move into user-to-user payments?

Fast Company claims that the main reason for moving users so aggressively to a separate messenger app lies in their move to facilitate user-to-user payments. And, of course, user-to-business payment is not far away from there. They even show screenshots as proof, but anyone could have just made those up. 
Still - it could make sense. With Apple pay at our doorsteps and SMS phasing out, which in some developing countries has essentially been an alternative currency system, this could be an interesting strategy. When you think about 'how to monetize a reach of over a billion people with something else than advertising', you quickly get to ideas that are not typical B2C models but infrastructure - high scalability, low risk, platform oriented, generating a network of parties that benefit from it. I think it's a legitimate theory.

Oct 5, 2014

Utilities of the future

When we say "utility", we think of less fancy commodity products like energy. Or water supply. Interesting thought here about future utilities, including areas where we - currently - see flashy, fancy apps and start-ups: Mobility, Health, Media.

Instant expert: real-time bidding

Nice overview on realtime/programmatic bidding and where online advertising is heading. And a nice headline: "buy, buy, baby".

Beats Audio banned from NFL

Either they start paying, or this will get into other leagues, too - the NFL signed a deal with Bose, a high profile headphone maker, and since they control and sell their TV images, they can tell their employees what is not to be shown on TV: in this case Beats Audio headphones. When I compare this with German Bundesliga, DFL, almost everytime i watch it I also see a player wearing one of those. Beats better start making contracts - or sign individual players and their social media channels -, or their competition will buy them out of the sports leagues.

PEW study: How social media is reshaping news

Interesting statistics from PEW research center showing that social media increasingly is becoming a pathway to news. 30% of US adults already get their news via Facebook. It is also interesting to see the difference on different sites: while Facebook struggles with realtime delivery (due to the newsfeed algorithm, there will most probably often also be older stories in your feed), half of those who use Twitter also get their news there. And on Reddit (with of course much less overall users), it is two thirds who consume news.

Why brands need video

Well, because they conduct Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and maybe even more accounts and need to tell 5-25 stories every day, and they can't all be just about their products and how great they are. In this regard, everyone mentions Red Bull, but there are more and more companies that create their own in-house content studios, and they are right in doing so. In a survey by a firm called "levels beyond", 61% said that they would watch a brand's video if it were shared by a friend. 67% say they like how-to videos and tutorials (which maybe also is a reason why YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google). At the same time, in this same study, 75% of marketers researched said that they rarely or never produce video.

Social logins gain importance

Wether it is the mobile shift or more familiarity with the product and the providers of social logins - first and foremost Facebook and Google - social logins gain momentum. According to a Gigya survey, 53% of people asked had used a social login in 2012. Two years later, that number is up to 77%. And it seems that convenience is the main driver according to the research.

Study excerpt here:


Multi Channel Networks may save "old media"

MCNs are hyped for a few years now. It doesn't seem to end, since first experiences esp. with YouTube Channels seem to work out pretty well, budgets go up - no wonder in times where everyone is struggling to connect with 13-25year olds - or older people with a similar media behaviour. Three-digit-million-evaluations for MCNs have become normal.

First signs of real change in the TV industry

We read about cord-cutters and Over the Top OTT television a lot, but did not see major TV networks or cable operators get under pressure like music labels many years ago or newspapers in the past decade. We know that fundamental change is about to come, but do not know how exactly it will play out. Read an interesting piece about a small cable operator from St. Louis "de-listing" Viacom channels, while at the same time Viacom sells its channels to an OTT service coming from Sony somewhen in the near future. Once sacred business relations are disrupted. The avalanche is starting to gain momentum.

How we find apps to download

Assuming, "we" act similar to US iOS and Android users who were focus of a study that is only available after registration, so i'll stick to the TechCrunch article linked below. App discovery is a scandal, and there's statistics to document it. Roughly half of people find apps through (in may ways: terrible) app store searches, while "friends/family recommendation" and "read about it in the web" as #2 and 3# rank better in this research than "an app store's top list". So you will need to master the dark witchcraft of app store SEO and/or get people to talk and brag about it.