Articles about Digital Media

Nielsen, eat your heart out: TiVo woos admen with prediction engine

Analysis More data means better performance for advertising – at least on the digital side. Increasingly, marketers are looking to inject data-driven decision making into the “dumbest” box in the house: the TV set. “The whole television industry used to be based on age, gender demographics, in terms of television buying and planning,” …
Faultline, 16 Jan 2017

Those online ads driving you bonkers are virtually 'worthless for brands'

One dollar of online display advertising will buy you approximately $0.03 worth of actual ads seen by real people, according to Bob Hoffman, a partner in media consultancy Type A Group. Hoffman, who used to run the Hoffman/Lewis Advertising agency, is well known for his skepticism of online ads, a view that has found some …
Thomas Claburn, 03 Jan 2017
Fox licks his chops. Photo by Shutterstock

Fox's meal Sky ready to smother Europe with foreign language OTT content

The OnPrime service – which emerged this week from Sky in the UK and Germany, offering a number of foreign language packages for visitors - seems to be built around the end to end over-the-top* (OTT) service which Sky has been investing in for years from US firm 1Mainstream. It put $2m into the company in 2013 and another $5m …
Faultline, 16 Dec 2016
Swamp alligators crowd near muddy water pool. Photo by Shutterstock

Fancy that! Google was keen on 'draining the swamp' in 2013

Faced with a report showing Google’s advertising network allowed big brands' ad money to be spent funding criminal operations, Google welcomed initiatives to “drain the swamp” in 2013 - three and a half years ago. But guess what? The swamp’s still here. And it's feeding a different sort of creature now. Today the Wall Street …
Andrew Orlowski, 09 Dec 2016

Has Samsung, er, rounded the corner with Apple court win?

Analysis Some good news has finally fallen the way of Samsung, as the Supreme Court has ruled in favour of the South Korean giant in its ongoing patent spat with Apple - scrapping a $399m damages bill in the latest episode of the hottest legal battle in tech, though certainly not the last. At the heart of this is the idea that instead …
Faultline, 09 Dec 2016
Friends look shocked watching TV. photo by Shutterstock

Watch your back, Netflix: Viu on track for 10 million subs next year

Analysis Hong Kong pay TV operator PCCW Media claims it has racked up 4 million active users on its OTT video service, Viu, after just one year of activity. An uptake of this pace presents Netflix, which recently made its belated entrance into South East Asia, with an almighty mountain to climb. Viu has every chance of surpassing the …
Faultline, 05 Dec 2016

Have some sympathy for the AT&T devil

Analysis When the first fixed-line phone systems were installed, you paid for everything, but particularly for each minute of each call. Later they had broadband added to the copper and a flat rate began to become the order of the day. As phone calls went to IP, the same applied to calls for the most part. While there are upper limits …
Faultline, 25 Nov 2016

DirecTV Now to give Apple TV free for those who take 3-month deal

We made it very clear in our October 20 review of DirecTV Now that no set top was going to be commissioned for the service and yet it would deliver to any TV, because it would use a digital media adapter such as Apple TV. So it wasn’t the biggest surprise we have come across when 3 weeks later another story ran, suggesting the …
Faultline, 15 Nov 2016
His master's voice

What's that, Adobe? A Photoshop for faking voices?

Recorded voice evidence will never quite be the same again. It might not even be "evidence". Last week, Adobe demonstrated a voice manipulation package called VoCo – a research project, and not (yet) a product, it says. Described as a "Photoshop for voiceovers", VoCo is actually quite brilliant. Given a speaking sample of …
Andrew Orlowski, 09 Nov 2016
Wi-fi symbol as chocolate dusting on cappuccino foam. Photo by Shutterstock

EU €120m Wi-Fi spend explained, but not excused

Opinion The deputy head of "Unit broadband" - a section of the European Commission dealing with “investment in high-capacity networks” - Herve Dupuy, flew into London to attend the Wi-Fi Now conference last week. He ran headlong into a combination of fulsome praise and dramatic criticism. The first was from the founder and owner of …
Faultline, 01 Nov 2016
Verizon's FiOS promo shot

Verizon boss: Yahoo! email hack 'is a big deal to us', we'll decide new price next month

Verizon is going to decide how much it is willing to pay for Yahoo! next month when an investigation into its massive security breach is completed. Speaking at Intel Capital's Global Summit in San Diego on Monday, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said that the breach last month, which saw 500 million people's email accounts …
Kieren McCarthy, 24 Oct 2016
Baby

US docs halve screen time for tots: No more than an hour a day

The American Academy of Pediatrics has changed its recommendations for children's use of electronic media, and has cut the overall time it recommends that tots spend on-screen. For the past 17 years, the influential group has recommended a blanket ban on digital media viewing until the age of two, and then allowing two hours a …
Iain Thomson, 24 Oct 2016
Woman serves at beginning of tennis game. Photo by Shutterstock

Sky’s CEO drops MVNO bombshell at results conference

At the announcement of its results this week, Sky said that it was planning MVNO services based on the O2 network, which is run in the UK by Telefonica. Faultline has been forecasting a move by Sky into cellular for the past four years and is surprised that it has taken this long for the move to emerge. The core Sky news was …
Faultline, 21 Oct 2016
Snow White waves goodbye. Photo copyright Disney

Disney aims for Netflix. If the deal was made, it would shoot itself in the foot

Analysis People that invest in Netflix and people that invest in Disney should never meet each other – they would not get on. But it seems there is a danger, according to the Wall Street Journal, that the two shall be thrown together in an unholy Alliance. While we can totally see the logic of such a deal, and how theoretically it …
Faultline, 10 Oct 2016
Raining money

A-dough-be: Photoshop flinger pumps profits 50 per cent

Adobe is crediting the success of its cloud and digital media groups in reporting record quarterly revenues. The Creative Cloud maker says that its Q3 2016 period (ended September 2) saw a number of units reach new highs: Revenues of $1.46bn were up 20 per cent over the year-ago quarter. Net income of $270m was a 55 per …
Shaun Nichols, 20 Sep 2016
Sheaf of £50 notes poised on the rim of a toilet bowl as toilet is flushed. Collage of two photos sourced from Shutterstock

Margaret Hodge's book outlines 'mind boggling' UK public sector waste

Review It’s impossible to read former bollocker-in-chief Margaret Hodge’s account of being chair of the government's spending watchdog without repeatedly banging your head against the wall. Hodge presided over the House of Commons’ Public Accounts Committee between 2010-2015, during the coalition government’s austerity programme. …
Kat Hall, 20 Sep 2016
Poster for the movie Cable Guy. Copyright:  Columbia Pictures Corporation,

Ericsson strikes partnerships with Intel and Google for pay TV

Ericsson said at IBC this week that it will partner Google to allow Android TV set tops to work with its MediaFirst TV Platform. It will also partner Intel to look for ways of bringing video processing more efficiently to the cloud. It has been re-engineering Microsoft’s Mediaroom since it acquired it three years ago, and many …
Faultline, 12 Sep 2016
IBM Headquarters, Armonk, NY

IBM will move stored stuff onto its new flashy boxen for free

IBM has launched more cost-effective Storwize all-flash arrays and announced a Flash In migration program aimed at Dell and EMC customers looking for a warm comfort blanket from Big Blue. The existing Storwize line includes: V7000 – hybrid flash/disk enterprise array V5000F – all flash enterprise array V5000 – mid-size …
Chris Mellor, 24 Aug 2016

FBI electronics nerd confesses: I fed spy tech blueprints to China

A veteran FBI geek funneled sensitive information about the Feds to the Chinese government – and now faces years behind bars. Kun Shan "Joey" Chun, 46, sent organizational charts and photographs of spying technology to a handler in the Middle Kingdom, while working as an electronics technician in a New York FBI office. Chun …
Shaun Nichols, 01 Aug 2016
Woman watches TV with cat, uses remote to change channel. Photo by Shutterstock

Ad blockers responsible for rise in upfront TV ad sales, claims report

The upfront market for broadcast and cable networks has taken an unexpected U-turn from last year’s dip, seeing an increase in advertising sales of $800m to $18.6bn in the most recent completion. According to research firm Media Dynamics, this 4.5 per cent increase in TV ad revenue is a blow to OTT video platforms on PCs and …
Faultline, 15 Jul 2016
Lauri Love. Pic: Courage Foundation

Here's how police arrested Lauri Love – and what happened next

Feature Lauri Love was arrested on suspicion of offences under the Computer Misuse Act 1990 early in the evening of 25 October 2013, when a National Crime Agency officer wearing dungarees and posing as a UPS courier told Love's mother that Lauri himself had to come to the porch to collect his delivery. In his dressing gown and pyjamas …
Boy with a backpack hides his eyes and cries. Pic by Shutterstock

I want to learn about gamification but all I see is same-ification

Something for the Weekend, Sir? “You don’t know you’re born,” they would say to me during my first holiday job. “You don’t know you’re a sad, blubber-arsed freeloader coasting towards retirement,” I’d reply… in my head, of course. Out loud, I would complain that they were being unfair, and I would be slapped down with that most frustrating of clichés “Life’ …
Alistair Dabbs, 24 Jun 2016

Clouds rain revenue on Adobe's business

Adobe's reported continued growth in its cloud subscriptions, but not enough to satisfy investors. Its Q2 2016 revenue rose 20.4 per cent year-on-year to US$1.4 billion on the back of Creative Cloud subscriptions: the digital media business piled on 26 per cent year-on-year to hit $943 million, with Creative Cloud chipping in …

Digital ad biz is fraudulent by design, complain big brands

Global trade body the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) has produced a useful guide to the digital ad industry's toxic sludge. The WFA represents the biggest spenders on digital advertising, such as Unilever and MasterCard, and they're not happy. Advertisers lose out from ad fraud, and firms need to clean up their own act …
Andrew Orlowski, 07 Jun 2016
Speedometer by Nathan E Photography, Flickr under CC2.0

Arista cuddles storage giants with leaf switch

Arista is touting interoperability with the likes of HP Enterprise, NetApp, EMC, Nutanix and PureStorage in its latest data centre release. Its 7280R Series is designed to sit alongside the 7500R spine platform, and the company says it packs deep buffering and “Internet-scale route tables” in a compact form factor, with the …
Doctor Who, Season 9 – Heaven Sent. Pic credit: BBC

BBC post-Savile culture change means staff can 'speak truth to power'

In the post-Savile BBC era staff won't be punished for "speaking truth to power" – one of the main issues behind the canned £126m Digital Media Initiative, director general of the BBC Tony Hall told MPs. Appearing in front of a Parliamentary select committee on the BBC’s critical projects, Hall said: "One of the things that …
Kat Hall, 26 May 2016
Who and tangerine: photo BBC

BBC's Britflix likely dead before the ink has even dried on the news

Analysis Anyone hearing this week that Britain’s BBC is set to launch against Netflix with a service touted as “BritFlix” will almost certainly get the wrong idea and believe it is actually going to happen. The move is being touted merely because the recent government review of the BBC encouraged the ancient British public broadcasters …
Faultline, 20 May 2016
World with light lines representing connectivity connecting various foci on the globe. Pic via Shutterstock

Extreme Networks Forum lands in London

Promo Want to know more about Extreme Networks? You have a great opportunity on May 26 to meet key executives, researchers and customers in London, at the software-driven networking solutions vendor’s latest Extreme Forum. Extreme Networks has devised a meaty agenda and has enlisted the eminent tech analyst R "Ray" Wang to deliver …
David Gordon, 19 May 2016

It should be a crime to install spyware on phones, thunders Plaid Cymru MP

Plaid Cymru MP Liz Saville Roberts has tabled a series of amendments to the Policing and Crime Bill which, among other things, could make it illegal to install spyware on someone's phone. Roberts, MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd* in Wales, is concerned about how new tech and platforms can be misused. Speaking to The Register, she …
Gareth Corfield, 10 May 2016
Peter Capaldi as Dr Who. Credit: BBC

At the BBC, Agile means 'making it up as we go along'

A £75m “Agile” BBC IT project has evaded scrutiny because managers could make up the benefits as they went along, according to the spending watchdog the National Audit Office. Any likelihood of the project achieving savings is now officially rated as “in doubt” by the BBC’s own project monitoring. Since the costly failure of …
Andrew Orlowski, 10 May 2016
Woman pays for something online with her credit card. Photo by Shutterstock

Experian Audience Engine knows almost as much about you as Google

We have grown so used to credit reference giants like Experian knowing almost as much about us as Google, but unlike Google, they put this information up for sale. This is perhaps why we have forgotten that Experian could form the basis of one of the most powerful personal intelligence systems in the world. And that it is a …
Faultline, 09 May 2016

BT Sport takes Elemental step of software encoding

Analysis BT has been as bold over distribution technology as the content itself for its sport channels, but then it had to be given Sky’s entrenched position in sports rights in the UK. BT Sport succeeded in at least ruffling Sky’s feathers and arguably making serious inroads firstly by biting into the English Premier League pie and …
Faultline, 05 May 2016
Shouting match

Blighty's SMB tech ranks bitterly divided on Brexit

Britain’s membership of the EU has small tech firms divided. A survey of owner-managed businesses by accountant Moore Stephens found 60 per cent of SME owners would vote to stay in the EU with less than one-in-five (17 per cent) supporting Brexit. Mark Lamb, a partner at the firm, said: “Owner-managed businesses are concerned …
Marcus Gibson, 27 Apr 2016
A dog wearing glasses, on a park bench reading the news paper

Nokia gobbles Withings

Nokia has acquired fitness gadget biz Withings for €170m (£131m). Withings specializes in making wearables and connected health monitoring devices, including scales, blood pressure monitors, and health trackers. The jump into wearables comes after Nokia rid itself of its mobile handset business. Instead, the Finnish firm says …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Apr 2016
Yahoo! branded bus

What's wrong with the Daily Mail Group buying Yahoo?

Analysis Right now MailOnline parent the Daily Mail Group is worth at most £2.5bn, and the few content assets that Yahoo! is supposed to be selling, are already worth way more than that. But the issues go deeper. DMG – parent both of the Daily Mail print newspaper and the massively successful online site Mail Online – has no magic …
Faultline, 18 Apr 2016

You won't believe this, but… nothing useful found on Farook iPhone

The iPhone at the center of the huge public fight between the FBI and Apple has "nothing of real significance" on it – just as we suspected. CBS News reports it has been told by a "law enforcement source" that the phone of San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook does not contain any information of practical assistance in the …
Kieren McCarthy, 14 Apr 2016
Doctor Who – The Zygon Invasion. Pic credit: BBC

The BBC flashes £560m ICT deal at hungry tech suppliers

The BBC has once again opened its wallet and is enticing suppliers to bid for a £560m ICT and hosting contract – part of its plans to replace its mega £2bn Atos contract. Over the next eight years it expects to splash between £400m and £560m on the deal, via a "single contracting entity" for end user compute services, hosting …
Kat Hall, 05 Apr 2016

Your 30 second guide to the past three months on Planet Adobe: Talk about sitting on cloud 9

Adobe is crediting a surge in cloud services with helping to drive its best financial Q1 take ever. The Silicon Valley software giant said that its Creative Cloud and Marketing Cloud services recorded strong growth on the quarter and spurred the company to increase its revenue target for the year. For the three months [PDF] …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Mar 2016

Everything bad in the world can be traced to crap Wi-Fi

Something for the Weekend, Sir? “Ah, it’s sod’s law,” murmurs the person sitting next to me. I nod agreeably. It was inevitable. I am attending a brief awards ceremony for student journalists prior to this year’s Hugh Cudlipp lecture. Young journos, we were reminded, were masters of digital content and were making their names through the use of social media …
Alistair Dabbs, 04 Mar 2016

Ofcom should be the BBC's ultimate overlord, UK.gov told

Telcomms regulator Ofcom should also regulate the BBC, a review for the Ministry of Fun has found. An independent review into the governance and regulation of BBC governance by Sir David Clementi, commissioned by DCMS, reported back yesterday. Astonishingly, Clementi came up with the result that the government had wanted in …
Andrew Orlowski, 02 Mar 2016
Simon Cowell, photo: s_bukley via Shutterstock

Oh TechNation. Britain's got tech talent. Just not like this

Opinion It was ironic that this month’s crowing Tech Nation report, which wrongly claimed the UK digital sector “was growing 32 per cent faster than the rest of the economy,” almost coincided with the total collapse of one of the sector’s biggest – and loudest – stars, Powa Technologies. Compiled by Tech City and NESTA, an innovation …
Marcus Gibson, 25 Feb 2016

IBM open sources its blockchain code – the non-crazy part of Bitcoin

IBM has open sourced a significant chunk of the blockchain code it has been working on, putting its weight behind the Linux Foundation and its Hyperledger project. Big Blue has dumped the Apache 2.0-licensed source on GitHub, providing a limited but functional dev environment to build on. The IT giant has pledged to maintain …
Kieren McCarthy, 18 Feb 2016

Hey cellcos: Guess who's got your backhaul still? That's right. Big daddy BT

One of the things that will not be answered by any amount of discussion about 5G is how the huge increase in bandwidth expected in next generation cellular gets backhauled. But at Faultline we have assiduously tracked the ownership of fixed line assets throughout the US and Europe, anticipating the rising cost of backhaul to …
Faultline, 16 Feb 2016

BT scoops £100m network provision deal from the BBC

Updated The BBC has picked BT to provide its internal network, in a £100m deal that will run for the next seven years. The broadcaster estimated the deal will save it tens of millions of pounds and will provide extra network capacity for major events. The deal will begin in April 2017, with the option of extending the contract for a …
Kat Hall, 29 Jan 2016
Money falling, image via Shutterstock

Bone-dry British tech SMBs miss out on UK.gov cash shower

Opinion Government technology promotion agency Innovate UK, the former Technology Strategy Board (TSB), surprised many last year when it agreed to spend no less than £800,000 on a piece of software that would “minimise building waste” sent to landfill by construction companies. The happy recipients for this bizarre project included …
Marcus Gibson, 20 Jan 2016

An on-demand video subscription isn't just for Christmas... Oh. It is

Premium video content is a must have for the Christmas period and to avoid missing out consumers are signing up to a multitude of over-the-top (OTT) services, but this will only be a festive fling for a large proportion. According to results of a recent survey from UK subscription and billing specialist PayWizard, 69 per cent …
Faultline, 21 Dec 2015
IBM CEO 'Ginni' Rometty

Clearleap buy ushers IBM’s entry into video

Big Blue is splashing more cash on beefing up its cloud-based offerings, last week acquiring Clearleap along with its video platform for an unspecified amount. Clearleap counts HBO, TWC, Verizon and BBC America among its customer list, and provides video services that deliver content to multiscreen devices, as well as an open …
Faultline, 14 Dec 2015
Sydney Harbour Bridge in the cloud

Adobe: We locked our customers in the cloud and out poured money

Reassuringly expensive software maker Adobe is laughing all the way to the bank after shunting more of its customers into the cloud - like they had any choice in the matter. The company closed off fiscal ’15 ended 27 November with Q4 revenue of $1.31bn, up 22 per cent year-on-year, driven by a 44 per cent hike in subscriptions …
Paul Kunert, 11 Dec 2015
Panic button

Cisco bitten by Java deserialisation bug, working on patch

November's high-profile Java deserialisation bug has bitten Cisco, with the company announcing vulnerabilities across the board in its huge product line. The problem is so pervasive that it reaches into the most trivial activities of the sysadmin, such as serial number assessment services. The original advisory made by …
Shop bargain sign

Who! would! want! Yahoo!? How! about! Verizon!?

With Yahoo! continuing to mull a possible sell-off of its core search business, Verizon has emerged as a possible buyer. Speaking at a conference in New York, Verizon chief financial officer Fran Shammo suggested his company might be interested in taking over some of the beleaguered Purple Palace's assets in the event Yahoo! …
Shaun Nichols, 07 Dec 2015