The way we access content is fundamentally changing. Shorter-form content continues to grow apace and, at the same time, viewing is fragmenting across myriad devices and screens. Helping drive this change has been the emergence of a new generation of distribution platforms that blend professional video, user generated content and social media.
Will the future of streaming be defined by SVoD (subscription video-on-demand) or free, advertising-funded video-on-demand – or can they both prosper? Those were the big questions addressed by BritBox launch director Reemah Sakaan and Viacom International Media Networks chief David Lynn.
Speaking on the day that the “best of British” SVoD announced a deal with Channel 5, Sakaan was asked by session chair Wayne Garvie how she was going to “persuade my mum and dad to spend £5.99 a month on BritBox”?
The new app-powered TV service will be available on mobile devices bundled with the UK’s first Freeview and 4K media streamer, the NetBox 4K.
Netgem.tv's service will offer over 50,000 hours of content with access to over 100 live Freeview channels, as well as catch-up content from BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All4, My5, UKTV Play and access to streaming services Amazon Prime Video, YouTube 4K and Rakuten TV.
The eerie trailer begins with the four childhood friends Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and Will (Noah Schnapp) playing innocently on an arcade game.
The atmosphere quickly changes as Will Byers is momentarily transported back into the dark Upside Down world and faced with a much bigger threat than the terrifying Demogorgon.
Anyone who tuned in for BBC Three’s final broadcast in the early hours of 16 February might have noticed the youth channel go out with a whimper, not a bang.
Not for BBC Three, any self-congratulatory run-down of the best commissions in its 13-year history. Instead, a repeat of Gavin & Stacey was followed by a trailer for new, online drama Thirteen and it all ended with a test card announcing that the channel had moved.
Perhaps the lack of fanfare was part of the brand’s emphatic declaration that it wasn’t closing, but moving.
Subtitles, sass and sex are the latest must-haves for broadcasters who are serious about satisfying their audiences. British viewers’ expanding appetite for foreign-language shows has taken in the mafia in Gomorrah on Sky Atlantic, the chilly Icelandic landscape of Trapped on BBC Four and the visceral drugs drama Prófugos on Channel 4’s new online service, Walter Presents.
Last month, a media storm broke out about a landmark change in children’s TV viewing habits. It was widely reported that, for the first time, “young people are spending more time online than watching TV”, according to “The Monitor Report 2016” by Childwise.
This was quickly challenged by Thinkbox, the marketing body for commercial television. But it highlighted some fundamental questions about the rapidly changing landscape of TV, online and mobile viewing:
To many adults, the choice of viewing options for children is as incomprehensible as the whistling language of The Clangers. There is now a myriad of platforms, apps and subscription video-on-demand (SVoD) services offering access to children’s shows. They include Amazon, Netflix, Freeview Play, YouView and Sky Go.
Children can watch their favourite CBBC shows, such as The Next Step, via the BBC iPlayer – or catch up with Nickelodeon brands, such as SpongeBob SquarePants, on the app Nick Play.
Live television remains the most popular way of watching TV in the UK despite a large drop of 4.9% in 2013-14, research by Ofcom shows.
As many as 70% (31m) of UK adults will be watching on demand television this month from free-to-air providers such as BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub and All 4. This figure places the UK ahead of all other major European countries, as well as big TV consuming nations Australia, Japan and the USA.
Channel 4 will launch a new on-demand service showcasing the best of foreign-language drama in January.
Walter Presents will be available for free on the channel’s digital hub All 4.
Former creative director at Betty, Walter Iuzzolino, will hand pick the content, drawn from around the world.
The first slate of dramas on the service, which launches on 3 January, includes Belgian drama-comedy Clan, German/US co-production Deutschland 83 and Argentinian psychological thriller Pure Evil.