06/13/16: More Chromecasts than Apple TVs ship in Q1; Hulu skinny bundle likely to cost about $34; IAB study shows record quarter of online ad revenue


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Good morning. It’s Monday June 13, 2016, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.


Connected TV: Connected TV (or CTV) refers to a television set that is connected to the Internet via OTT devices, Blu-ray players and gaming consoles, or has built-in Internet capabilities (in other words, a so-called “Smart TV”). Connected TVs can generally access short- and long-form web-based content.


According to the global information company IHS, shipments for the Google Chromecast digital media player surpassed Apple TV shipments. That’s the first time that’s ever happened. And according to HIS, it actually wasn’t close: 3.2 million Chromecasts shipped in Q1, compared to 1.7 million Apple TVs. The Chromecast has become more competitive with its rivals since launching its next-gen device last September. Among other features, the newer Chromecast is designed to be much easier to plug into a TV than the previous model. Oh, and it’s much cheaper than the Apple TV, selling for $35. The Apple TV starts at $149.
According to MoffettNathanson Senior Research Analyst Michael Nathanson, Hulu’s upcoming live TV service will likely cost around $34 per month. Factored into the analysis is the fact that Disney/ABC, NBCU, and Fox (the three of which co-own Hulu) will, in all likelihood, be included in the service. (“We think that with the backing of Disney and Fox and the tag-along prospects of NBCU, you’ve got three of the four broadcast networks lined up,” Nathanson said.) The service is slated to launch next year.




Legendary Digital Networks, the digital division of Legendary Entertainment, is set to launch a new streaming service. Called Alpha, the service is a joint venture between the LDN channels Geek & Sundry and Nerdist and will deliver live and interactive programming, allowing subscribers to interact with each other, and with the shows’ content and personalities. Alpha will heavily employee tools such as polling and chat, and will also allow some users to appear on screen during webcasts. Subscribers will also get VIP event access, as well as merchandise discounts and other bonuses.


A new announcement from OWNZONES, a technology platform offering a multi-platform distribution solution for media companies and content owners: The indie entertainment distributor Cinedigm will create channels for OWNZONES.com. The first label to create a channel will be ConTV, Cinedigm’s OTT service geared toward the Comic Con community. “By using the right structure for our team, and the right technology solutions, we’ve been able to…do things on a very cost-efficient basis,” said Dan Goman, OWNZONES’ Founder and CEO, in a recent interview with Cynopsis Digital. “And I think that’s one of the reasons why you see more and more companies coming to us: We’re able to leverage the latest and greatest on the technology side, and do things more efficiently. And in some cases that results in almost a 75% cost-savings over what companies are currently doing.”


TV still offers incredible opportunities for brands to reach consumers, but the advertising experience is being reinvented.

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The money keeps pouring into VR. Virtual Reality Company (or VRC) is the latest virtual reality production startup to take in a hefty fundraising round. The production company, which is known for The Martian VR Experience (a 20 minute companion experience produced in support of 20th Century Fox’s The Martian), has raised $23 million from the Chinese company Hengxin Mobile Business Co., Ltd. (Hengxin is also gaining exclusive Chinese distribution right for VRC content.) VRC was co-founded by Robert Stromberg, the well-known Hollywood visual effects artist who directed Disney’s Maleficent. He serves as VRC’s Chief Creative Officer.
Limitless VR, a startup that’s been developing technology for responsive VR characters that can respond to the voices and movements of users, also nabbed some funding. The company raised about $1 million in a new seed round. Investors included the music producer Jay Rifkin and actor Masi Oka (NBC’s Heroes). Rifkin and Oka are also joining the company’s board of advisors.




Spotify and Apple Music may soon have a major new competitor. According to Reuters, Amazon is preparing to roll out a standalone subscription music streaming service. Priced at $9.99 per month (the same as Spotify and Apple Music), the service will offer a competitive catalogue of songs, according to Reuters’ sources. (According to the report, Amazon is currently finalizing licenses with labels.) The new service is expected launch in late summer or early fall.


According to a report from the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), online ad revenues came in at $15.9 billion in Q1 2016. That’s an all-time record. And it represents a staggering 21% increase over Q1 of last year, when digital ad revenues reached $13.2 billion. The study was conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC).


How much did Google pay to acquire YouTube in 2006? You can find the answer in tomorrow’s newsletter.


Friday’s Trivia Question: Last year, German publisher Axel Springer acquired an online publication in a deal that valued the publication in question at almost $450 million. Which publication was it? Answer: Business Insider


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Bet you wish you’d taken this course when you were in college. In a class focusing on virtual and augmented reality, a team of computer science students at the University of Washington had access to the Microsoft HoloLens development team, and also heard from other VR/AR players, including Oculus Chief Scientist Michael Abrash. The end goal of the course was to design an app. To take a look at the fruits of the students’ labor, go here.
Watcheroo Premieres and Tune-in Alerts for the week of June 13:
People Now at People.com, Monday-Friday at 8:30a ET and 11:30a ET: Guests include director Roland Emmerich (Independence Day: Resurgence), TV personality Nick Cannon (NBC’s America’s Got Talent), and model and actress Amber Rose (VH1’s The Amber Rose Show).
Acorn TV: The ITV period biopic Cilla makes its U.S. debut on the streaming service today, June 13.
Crackle: Season 8 of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, starring Jerry Seinfeld, debuts June 16
Seeso: Gentlemen Lobsters, based on the GQ series, debuts on NBCU’s comedy streaming service June 16
– Seeso
: The documentary The Pistol Shrimps, about an all-female recreational basketball team, debuts June 16
Netflix: Season Four of Orange Is the New Black debuts June 17
is Cynopsis Digital’s tune-in guide, categorized alphabetically by platform or network. Programming includes digital premieres, ongoing shows, live-streamed events and linear TV digital integrated series.

See you tomorrow,
David Teich

Roberta Caploe: Publisher @robertacaploe
Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group

Cynopsis Ad Sales: Mike Farina | VP, Sales | 203-218-6480
Cynopsis Job Listings Sales: Trish Pihonak | Director of Operations | 203-899-8459

Cynopsis Media: a division of Access Intelligence, LLC * 10 Norden Place * Norwalk, CT * 06855 * USA

CYNOPSISJOBSFor More jobs, visit Cynopsis.com

JOB OPENING: MEDIA PLANNER/MELT/ATL: Manage paid efforts in Digital & Social Media. Will work w/clients to align goals and understand needs to recommend effective paid media opportunities. 7+ yrs experience. Resume to: [email protected] (6/18)

JOB OPENING: MANAGER, RESEARCH/Travel Channel/Knoxville: Manage analyses/ratings reporting with a strong focus on interpreting data. 5-8 years exp. Nielsen and Excel exp required.Cable ntwk & lifestyle media exp a plus.Full info/apply HERE (6/17)

JOB OPENING: ASSOCIATE PRODUCER/Vulcan Productions/Seattle, WA: Vulcan Prods creates high-quality, award-winning, non-fic films of all lengths & formats. Support prod team from pre to post-prod. Min 4 yrs as AP, or similar position w/similar prod duties in non-fic or doc film. Full info/apply HERE (6/17)

JOB OPENING: VP DATA STRATEGY/Scripps Networks Interactive/NYC: The VP of data strategy will lead data-driven efforts and initiatives with a focus on monetization, growth and optimization of cross-platform audience, and cultivation of first party/third party data. Click HERE for more detail (6/17) 

JOB OPENING: VP, INTEGRATED MARKETING & SALES/PAC-12/SFO: Engages w/advertisers & their associated agencies to sell advertising in a multimedia capacity: TV, Digital & Conference Championship Sponsorships. For full posting/apply HERE (6/16)
JOB OPENING: GAMEPLAY PROGRAMMER/ARENA/Bellevue WA: Collaborate in autonomous, cross discipline feature teams to successfully meet team goals. Full info/apply HERE (6/16)

JOB OPENING: SOFTWARE ENGINEER/PopCap Games/Seattle WA: Seek to ensure strong quality coding practices, supporting the team with the development of tools and analysis of their code. Full info/apply HERE (6/16)

JOB OPENING: SENIOR ENGINE PROGRAMMING/Insomniac Games/Burbank CA: Design and develop new engine technology for current and future games based on prioritized list of what other departments require. Full info/apply HERE (6/16)

JOB OPENING: SR UI DESIGNER/SAMSUNG/NYC: Problem-solver with excellent visualization, collaboration, and communication skills. Full info/apply HERE (6/15)

JOB OPENING: SR CLOUD OPERATIONS ENGINEER/DELL/Herndon VA: Play a key role in maintaining FedRAMP, FISMA and DoD ATOs for DCG and customer ATO environments. Full info/apply HERE (6/15)

JOB OPENING: SR SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT/DELL/Plano TX: Oversee and manage large and complex client accounts & project delivery teams. Full info/apply HERE (6/15)

JOB OPENING: SR SOFTWARE ENGINEER/Zenith R & D/Santa Clara CA: Help design and deliver a comprehensive suite of libraries and tools enabling developers to build native-quality web apps.
Full info/apply HERE (6/15)

CASTING CALL: Companies can showcase their casting notices/casting calls here. For information on rates and specs for posting a casting notice, please email Trish at [email protected]

EXPERT SERVICES ADS: These ads are for companies or people who offer an expertise in the field of media by way of production, voice over artistry, writing, set development, etc. For information on rates and specs for posting an Expertise Service ad email Trish at [email protected]

INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. These ads are always posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected].

SUMMER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: AmericanVideoGroup.com is seeking interns for Summer. Interns are required to be on site. Schedule flexible; 4 day-16 hour week. Please send resume to: [email protected] (6/18)

SITUATION WANTED ADS, POSTED BY THOSE LOOKING TO BE HIRED… There is no charge for placing your Situation Wanted ad… for more information contact Trish Pihonak at trish@cynopsis.com

SITUATION WANTED: 23-year finance rainmaker looking to transition to digital media sales & biz dev with a global media and entertainment brand with multi-channel platforms and opportunities. 7 figure closer, deep relationships, capable operator. Need a foot in the door. Contact: [email protected] (6/16)

SITUATION WANTED: 8yrs. ENT exp. w/research, guild, talent, cultivating relationships. Seeks NY work as contracts admin/rights analyst, paralegal, legal/executive assistant/coordinator p:347-740-6971e: [email protected] (6/15)

E-mail [email protected] or call Trish Pihonak at 203-899-8459 for rates and specs for Job Openings.

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