08/31/20: Media Tech Update


Medias First Morning Read
Monday August 31, 2020

Facebook launched a suite of tools and features designed to expand commerce across its social media platforms. Facebook Shop, a dedicated space on the flagship Facebook app is among the new offerings in the company’s bid to make all things shoppable on its platform.

Roku stock hit an all-time high on Friday, closing up 7% to $172.85 after a bullish note from Deutsche Bank’s Jeffrey Rand. The analyst cited a survey that found 43% of CTV respondents said they had a Roku device, versus 35% for Amazon’s Fire TV and 27% for Apple TV.

Angling to optimize pent-up demand for returning to movie theaters, Snapchat and Atom Tickets launched Movie Tickets By Atom. The app, under the Snap Minis umbrella, serves up trailers and tickets to users in the US and Canada and links their movie plans with their personal networks. As theaters gradually are starting to reopen, Atom said its survey of 16,000 moviegoers found 74% are ready to return to theaters in the next month.

UK-based data analytics and measurement company Brightblue Consulting is merging with MightyHive, S4Capital’s data and digital media practice. “Data, particularly first-party data, is at the heart of S4Capital’s ‘holy trinity’ business model. Brightblue’s skills in making sense of it and using it to drive profitable growth are a timely addition to our client-focused service offering,” said S4Capital Executive Chairman Martin Sorrell. “We believe the measurement and modeling systems in our industry are in dire need of innovation. They are either too slow and traditional and no longer fit for purpose, or too narrowly confined to digital channels. We look forward to disrupting this multi-billion dollar industry with a modern new-era approach which is faster, better, and cheaper.”

Walmart is partnering with Microsoft on a proposal to acquire ByteDance-owned TikTok. The Chinese version of TikTok, Douyin, is an e-commerce destination popular among young consumers; Walmart said TikTok’s integration of e-commerce and advertising would be a good fit for its business. The short-form video sharing app is under scrutiny from the US government and faces the presidential threat of a ban if the company isn’t sold, a situation that led to the resignation of CEO Kevin Mayer last week after less than four months on the job.

TikTok revealed its user numbers—the platform has 100 million monthly active users, more than double the 39.9 million of last October—as part of its lawsuit filed against President Trump. Since January 2018, the site has surged more than 800%, and its global footprint reaches 689 million users across more than 200 countries.

The ‘70s called, and they want to play Pong. The new Atari VCS gaming system, slated to launch in November, is inspired by the classic console that launched in 1977. The VCS will feature new games alongside classic and remastered favorites, plus some decidedly modern perks like streaming media and personal apps including Plex, which offers free-on-demand movies and shows from Crackle, Lionsgate, MGM and Warner Bros. Domestic TV.

The lights are still out for Fortnite at the Apple App Store. A federal judge denied publisher Epic Games’ bid for an emergency order to have the game restored on the app store, the latest chapter in the tech companies’ legal battle over Apple’s policy of assessing a 30% fee to apps publishers over which Epic sued earlier this month.

Amazon-owned service Audible is launching a lower-priced subscription tier. Audible Plus, at $7.95/month, provides access to 11,000 podcasts, books and series. The legacy entry-level subscription plan, which costs $14.95, will adopt the new moniker Audible Premium Plus and include one credit per month, which can be used to download any piece of content outside the Plus catalog, regardless of price or length.

The Cynopsis Adtech Awards


In the face of surprising acquisitions, privacy concerns, and drops in ad spend, we at Cynopsis are blown away by the incredible work we see the ad tech community producing – and we want everyone to hear about it. See who made the cut and stay tuned for ceremony details coming on early December.



Ad management firm Viamedia received a patent for its QTT platform, a cloud-based television advertising solution aimed at bridging the gap between linear TV and digital advertising. QTT requests and receives ads from programmatic digital ad exchanges to enable real-time linear cable TV ad insertion using existing cable TV infrastructure.

Clear Channel Outdoor partnered with Tremor Video, a programmatic video and data-driven TV platform, to help brands amplify out-of-home reach and deepen consumer engagement. By integrating Tremor Video’s capabilities with RADARConnect, Clear Channel Outdoor can provide a coordinated OOH and all-screen video solution for advertisers.


Thirty-five percent of US consumers have tried a new ad-supported streaming service since the pandemic outbreak, and 42% plan to cancel their cable service, according to new data from Unruly. In a survey of nearly 1,800 US consumers in July 2020, Unruly also found 42% are spending “a lot more time” watching CTV content but marketers are trailing with their media plans. In 2020, 3.4% of US marketers’ total ad spending will go on CTV. In other findings, 73% say they would prefer to watch their favorite TV show for free with ads rather than pay for an ad-free experience, and 64% plan to reduce the amount they pay for TV services.

Consumers are expanding their streaming habits and showing signs of keeping them permanently. Only 2% of adults say they are reducing the number of paid services they subscribe to, while 25% have added a service in the past three months, according to the new Nielsen Total Audience Report. Among other insights: Streaming among OTT-capable homes accounts for 25%of consumers’ collective time spent with the television; streaming has taken hold among consumers 55 and older; and Hispanics have adopted new services even more wholeheartedly at 40%.

Yet another survey points to the willingness of consumers to pile on more streaming subscriptions. New data from Leichtman Research Group based on a sample of 1,990 households, shows 78% have a subscription to Netflix, Amazon Prime or Hulu, up from 69% in 2018 and 52% in 2015. More than 55% now subscribe to one service in that category, up from 43% in 2018 and 20% in 2015. In other findings:
* At least 82% of households have at least one of the newer streaming launches including Disney+, HBO Max and BET+, while 49% have three or more.
* 40% of adults stream an SVOD service every day, up from 30% in 2018 and 16% in 2015.
* Younger adults are the most active streamers; A18-44 account for 63% of daily SVOD users.

Cinedigm and Canela.TV, the free ad-supported streaming channel for Hispanics, are in a partnership to bring MyTime Movie Network to Spanish-language speaking audiences. MyTime Movie Network offers curated content catering to women of all ages and has an audience upward of 20 million viewers.

Tubi and TiVo renewed and expanded their agreement that now will see Tubi’s library of more than 23,000 movies and shows available on the new TiVo Stream 4K device and streaming on the TiVo+ content network.

Streaming service KAST TV launched as a global SVOD watch party solution. Service features built-in social aimed at enabling “Kasters” to have visual/video chat capabilities in real time without interrupting playback of the streamed content. KAST TV also grants access to browsing third-party content as it opens the gateway Tubi and YouTube on its platform.

Membership tiers and offline viewing options are coming to anime hub Crunchyroll. Crunchyroll will continue with a free AVOD option, with new eps available one week after premiere. With a new $7.99/month Fan tier, subscribers will get ad-free viewing, access to Crunchyroll’s anime library of more than 1,000 titles, and access to its digital manga library and one stream. The $9.99/month Mega Fan tier includes all that plus offline viewing and access to four concurrent streams. The Ultimate Fan package, at $14.99/month, adds on six concurrent streams and additional swag.

Three new music-focused networks from Quincy Jones’ Qwest TV will join Samsung TV Plus, the free streaming service that comes installed on all 2016-2020 Samsung Smart TVs. The new nets are F.A.S.T channels—Qwest Jazz & Beyond, Qwest Classical and Qwest Mix.

Cinedigm is expanding its ad-supported portfolio with So…Real on STIRR, Sinclair Broadcast Group’s free live and on-demand streaming service. Cinedigm’s The Bob Ross Channel, CONtv and The Dove Channel also are available on STIRR. The new STIRR platform is accessible on iOS and Android devices, as well as Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV, and online at www.STIRR.com.

Cynopsis Team

Lynn Leahey
Editorial Director
Kerry Smith
Division President
Access Intelligence

Roberta Caploe

Cynopsis Ad Sales
Mike Farina

Albert Nassour

Cynopsis Job Listings Sales
Mike Farina

Check out more jobs in Cynopsis Classifieds »
Job of the day

Seeking highly motivated, self-starter to work with producers and management on company and show-specific messaging and branding to be promoted online and over social media. Min 3 yrs of social media exp and position can work remotely. Full info HERE (9/14)

INSP, LLC/CHARLOTTE, NC: Seeking ideal candidate with proven, successful exp in managing creative digital-first content, creating websites and digital prop. Min 5yrs exp in mngmt of a website prop and/or other digital products in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment. Full info HERE (9/14)

MAGNOLIA/NY, KNOXVILLE, AUSTIN: Strong content leader with a mix of linear & digital experience to create & produce original programming for Magnolia alongside Chip & Joanna Gaines. Guide creative & editorial decisions across varying platforms. Min 10 yrs exp req’d. Full info HERE (9/9)

GLASS ENTERTAINMENT GRP/PHILA, PA: Seeking full-time, in-house legal counsel. Must have min 5 yrs of legal exp with 3 yrs of entertainment law exp. Responsibilities include overseeing all legal matters, working directly with the management team on all business legal affairs, as well as tracking and completing all contracts with networks, talent and clients. Full Info HERE (9/8)

FUTURE TODAY INC/CHICAGO, LA, NYC: Seeking salespeople to represent our CTV portfolio spanning kids/family, entertainment and lifestyle content. Ideal candidate will have exp within Retail, Insurance, and/or CPG verticals as well as existing relationships with major agencies. Minne relationships are essential for the IL role. Full info HERE (9/8)

NBCUNIVERSAL/NY, NY: Seeking an individual who is looking for the opportunity to learn and grow in an exciting, evolving research environment supporting ELG Research team. Min 2 yrs exp in research, advertising, or media outlet. Prefer exp at a cable network. Full info HERE (9/7)

TWIN CITIES PBS/ST. PAUL, MN: New, FT position, that will design and implement a holistic and enterprise-wide inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA) strategy into all of our programs and business initiatives. Min 10ys exp in IDEA in a nonprofit, educ and/or media preferred. Full info HERE (9/7)

GLASS ENTERTAINMENT GRP/Phila, PA: Seeking motivated, self-starter to join our podcast team. This individual will be responsible for securing ad campaigns across our slate of podcasts. Must have podcast, audio or digital ad sales experience. Full info HERE (9/7)

A+E/NY: Support Int’l, Corp Dev and Corp Divisions, incl domestic & int’l mergers & acquisitions and general corp matters in addition to support of relationships with int’l channel partners & int’l content sales. YOU NEED: JD, min 7 yrs legal exp at a major law firm or in-house counsel at a media company, exp in an active M&A practice, content licensing exp & strong negotiation & drafting skills. Full info HERE (9/6)

Magnolia/New York, Knoxville, Austin: CD w/a strong eye to oversee dev of original programming for Magnolia partnering with Chip & Joanna Gaines. Build new talent and concepts across varying platforms. 7+ yrs network/production exp req’d. Full info HERE (9/6)


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