In Broadcast - July 2013 - 22


I N T E R N A T I O N A L

WWW.INBROADCAST.COM | ISSUE 21 - JULY 2013

N E W S

InUSA

OTA Broadcasters Rush To IP Services
Traditional linear broadcasters in the US are catering to a rising consumer appetite for on-demand
content by making their content available online…

By Michael Grotticelli
Contributing Editor

U

22

S broadcasters are beginning to
recognise the value in extending
their reach to portable devices via
an Internet Protocol (IP) signal.
This was a concept that was totally
unacceptable even two years ago,
when IP-delivered services were
seen by traditional over-the-air
(OTA) stations as a real threat to
their established business model.
This new trend is stimulated
by the fact that the mobility of
electronic devices is on the fast
track in the US (as it is around the
world). Indeed, sales of electronic
tablets, smartphones, e-readers
and wireless mobile hotspots are
leading the markets, according to
research released by the Consumer
Electronics Association. Sales of
tablet computers are up 17% this
year, with adoption of smartphones
(12%), e-readers (10%) and wireless
mobile hotspots (10%) also growing.
Also, nearly 43 million US
households (36%) subscribe to
video rental and streaming services,
and another 15% of households said
they expected to subscribe to at
least one of these services in the
year ahead. Add to this the fact
that viewer consumption is rapidly
changing to an a la carte, anywhere/
any time programming model, and
one can see why broadcasters now
understand they have to keep up
or lose ground to the competition.
And there’s plenty of competition,

from Aereo, the new television
service that brings overthe-air broadcast signals
to Internet viewers via small
antennas, to IP-enabled set top
boxes that allow you to watch only
those shows you want to watch,
like those from Apple, Netflix,
Roku and others.
IP Delivery At All Levels
It’s happening at every level of
the broadcast industry, from the
largest networks, like ABC and
CBS, to the smallest affiliate station,
like those owned and operated by
Gray Television, the Atlanta-based
owner of 41 television stations
across the country.
In announcing that ABC would the
first broadcast network to stream its
entire programme lineup over the
Internet to viewers in New York City
and Philadelphia, Anne Sweeney,
Co-chair of Disney Media Networks
and President of Disney/ABC
Television Group, called the move
a “game-changing innovation for
the broadcast television industry”.
“This announcement represents
a defining moment in technology
and distribution, as well as for our
advertising and affiliate partners,
as we ensure that our high-quality
content is available to viewers on a
variety of devices,” Sweeney said.
The ABC feed will be available
on an app called “Watch ABC” as
well as on Apple’s iOS iPad and

The ABC feed will be available on the “Watch ABC” app

IP-enabled set top boxes,
such as Roku, allow you
to watch only those shows
you want to watch

iPhone operating system
and Amazon’s Kindle Fire. Other
brands of tablets and phones will
get support later this year.
At first glance, the move appears
to be a response to Aereo, the
company that is already selling
network programming to New York
City viewers with plans to expand to
22 other cities in the near future. The
broadcasters consider Aereo illegal,
but the courts have ruled in the
company’s favour and the company
is ramping up service this week in
Boston and Atlanta on June 24.
Distinct Competition
However, ABC’s business model is
different from Aereo. After a six-week
preview period (which began May
14) was available to anyone living
in the New York City (WABC-TV)
and Philadelphia (WPVI-TV) markets,
ABC then made the service available
only to authenticated cable, satellite
and Telco TV subscribers. Users
must enter a password for their pay
TV service to access the stream.
Once the concept has been proven
with consumers, the network said
it would expand its Internet feeds
to other cities (after it negotiates
with each of its O&O stations). The
service is expected to launch before
the fall television season begins at
ABC-owned stations in Los Angeles
(KABC-TV), Chicago (WLS-TV),
San Francisco (KGO-TV), Houston
(KTRK-TV), Raleigh-Durham (WTVDTV) and Fresno (KFSN-TV). Hearst, a
partner in the venture with ABC, will
bring the service to 13 more markets,
including Boston, Pittsburgh,
Kansas City and Milwaukee.
Aereo rents users a small antenna
that picks up all on-air local
programming in a market and makes
that programming available with
DVR features for about $12 a month.
Aereo does not pay broadcasters or
the networks any fees. Broadcasters
consider that illegal.
To keep its costs low, ABC is using
cloud technology to deliver the
live streams to viewers. Users say
Aereo’s system is more expensive,

but far less restrictive.
The key difference is ABC is
supporting the cable industry and
not cord cutters who refuse to
pay for traditional cable television
service. It’s a fundamental
difference between the systems.
ABC has agreements in place
for authentication with Comcast,
Cablevision, Cox Communications,
Charter Communications,
Midcontinent Communications and
AT&T U-verse.
Ken Brueck, co-founder of upLynk,
the company that powers the live
streaming for ABC, said that it’s
only a matter of time before ABC’s
affiliates join the live stream as well.
Affordable Implementation
From a technology perspective,
ABC’s live streaming is very low
cost. Affiliates that want to stream
their programmes require a standard
Linux box that taps into their live
broadcast feed and uploads the
programming to the cloud, where
transcoding occurs in real-time
thanks to Amazon’s EC2 cloudbased signal processing platform.
Software loaded on the
upLynk device connects with the
broadcaster’s programming guide,
and upLynk swaps out programming
on the fly if the broadcaster doesn’t
have the rights to air a certain
show online. Also swapped out are
commercials, with ABC replacing
its generic TV advertising with
targeted ads served to mobile
computing devices.
According to sources, ABC’s
mobile live stream will include the
same sorts of digital ads that are
now on ABC.com. This is partly
because the Nielsen Company is
not able to measure mobile viewing
of live television yet.
Because it is not paying the
broadcasters, Aereo actually has
more freedom to air shows that
ABC can’t air. Local stations may
not have the right to air certain
syndicated shows online. When
CONTINUED ON PAGE 23


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of In Broadcast - July 2013

In Broadcast - July 2013
Contents
InNews: Fiji TV Playout Facility Opts for Harris Broadcast Gear
InNews: Avalon Studios Goes for Xytech
InFocus: Panasonic Pro-Camera Equipment in Antartica
InSound: European Soccer Covered With Lawo Technology
InGear: Egripment Launch Universal Dolly
InTech: Abonair Part II – Wireless Video Links
InMedia: Vector 3: The Playout People
In Broadcast - July 2013 - Intro
In Broadcast - July 2013 - In Broadcast - July 2013
In Broadcast - July 2013 - Cover2
In Broadcast - July 2013 - Contents
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InNews: Fiji TV Playout Facility Opts for Harris Broadcast Gear
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 5
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InNews: Avalon Studios Goes for Xytech
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 7
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 8
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 9
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 10
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 11
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 12
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 13
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 14
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 15
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 16
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 17
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 18
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 19
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 20
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 21
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 22
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 23
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InFocus: Panasonic Pro-Camera Equipment in Antartica
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 25
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 26
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 27
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 28
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 29
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 30
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 31
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 32
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 33
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 34
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 35
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 36
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 37
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 38
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 39
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InSound: European Soccer Covered With Lawo Technology
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 41
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 42
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 43
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 44
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 45
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 46
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InGear: Egripment Launch Universal Dolly
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 48
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 49
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 50
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 51
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 52
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 53
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InTech: Abonair Part II – Wireless Video Links
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 55
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 56
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 57
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 58
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 59
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 60
In Broadcast - July 2013 - InMedia: Vector 3: The Playout People
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 62
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 63
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 64
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 65
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 66
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 67
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In Broadcast - July 2013 - 69
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 70
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 71
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 72
In Broadcast - July 2013 - 73
In Broadcast - July 2013 - Cover3
In Broadcast - July 2013 - Cover4
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S1
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S2
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S3
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S4
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S5
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S6
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S7
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S8
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S9
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S10
In Broadcast - July 2013 - S11
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