Netflix and NeuLion Boost New OTT Channels as Qwest Selects OTT Route

Disney-ABC and Taiwan TV Shows Now Available to Subscriber

The OTT (Over The Top) IPTV market continues to show strength of the business model with separate announcements from Netflix and NeuLion channel KyLinTV this week on top of Qwest's proclamations last week.

Netflix Announcement: Netflix and Disney-ABC Television Group announced a streaming deal which will ad “Lost”, “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Legend of the Seeker” shows to Netflix’s existing lineup of TV shows available for immediate streaming to a network connected TV, PC or the Roku mini set top box. "In all, we're providing Netflix members with some of the most popular and avidly followed shows on TV while working with an important business partner to help grow several of its key franchises," said Robert Kyncl, VP of Content Acquisition for Netflix

KyLinTV Announcement: KyLinTV, a Chinese language streaming TV channel, announced their "Basic Taiwan Package" with the addition of two ETTV channels of Taiwan television.  In addition to the 26 channels that make up KyLinTV's Basic Package, the new bundle includes 7 other popular channels: ET-Global, ET-News, STAR Chinese Channel, Asia Plus, Unique Satellite TV, Unique Business News and MAC TV.  KyLinTV uses the NeuLion IPTV servers and set top box.  (KylinTV’s founder, Charles B. Wang, is COB of NeuLion.)

Qwest Goes for OTT: On July 30th, Quest announced they would focus on VOD and other video applications which will enhance free ATSC digital programming available to their subscribers.  Qwest is currently conducting video trials in four of its local service markets to understand how to deliver video services by using a mixture of [over the air] digital broadcast, over-the-top video and on-demand programming.  However, they do not want the licensing and equipment expense for delivering local TV channels.  They would rather preserve their broadband capacity for premium content.

Business Model for OTT: Netflix, Amazon, and NeuLion all provide streaming IPTV with a special purpose set top box (or network connected TV) and a monthly subscription.  The market price for OTT set top boxes is about $99.00 and subscribers usually pay from $9.99 to as much as $14.99 per month to see the content from their chosen service provider.  With 20 Million network connected TVs becoming available in 2011, special purpose or secondary set top boxes may have a short lifespan.

Threat to MSOs?: As US consumers become more aware of the availability of free HD channels via ATSC with Over The Top movies and specialty TV shows available via broadband,  will they continue to pay the ever increasing monthly charges to their cable and satellite carriers?  Perhaps the move by Qwest to abandon the FiOS and U-Verse model for broadband TV is a clear signal of what’s to come.

Keep pushing forward

Jeff Vinson

[You may contact Jeff directly for Consulting or Trade Show speaking engagements]