Video services

Netflix Beats Apple in Online Movies

Welcome to today's cable news roundup.

  • Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) made more revenues from online movie distribution than any other provider in 2011, according to IHS Inc. The firm says Netflix's market share jumped to 44 percent last year, followed by Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), which held 32.3 percent of the market. Apple's market share has fallen fast; it was 60.8 percent in 2010. Rounding out the top five were Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) (7.5 percent), VUDU Inc. (4.2 percent) and Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) (2.4 percent).

    IHS says the online movie business doubled to $992 million in 2011, and could double again this year.

  • WaveDivision Holdings LLC CEO Steve Weed has teamed with Oak Hill Capital Partners and GI Partners to acquire WaveDivision from Sandler Capital Management and its other current owners for an undisclosed sum. Weed and Sandler Capital formed WaveDivision in 2003, and now operate cable systems passing more than 586,000 homes in parts of San Francisco, Sacramento, Seattle and Portland, Ore., under the Wave Broadband and Astound brands. They expect to close the deal by the fourth quarter. (See WOW & Wave Broadband Divvy Up Broadstripe .)

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) has added live TV streams from CNN and HLN to its Xfinity.com/tv Web video hub, a move that follows initial support for those authenticated streaming apps on the iPad. Elsewhere on the TV Everywhere front, Comcast now lets customers access the MAX GO service on the Cinemax website and via the premium programmer's app for iOS and select Android devices.

  • Verizon Wireless booted up viewdini, its video portal for tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices, on Friday (June 1), following its introduction at The Cable Show last month in Boston. Viewdini is kicking off with on-demand content from Comcast, Hulu LLC , mSpot and Netflix. Fare from Verizon FiOS TV is expected to join the viewdini menu soon. A search on viewdini lets users know which partners have the title available for streaming, and if it's offered for free, as part of a subscription, or for rent or purchase. (See Verizon's 'Viewdini' Unchains Comcast Video .)

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

  • msilbey 12/5/2012 | 5:31:11 PM
    re: Netflix Beats Apple in Online Movies

    I tried out Viewdini when it went live last week. Works as advertised, but my appetite for viewing video on my phone is limited. The question is whether Verizon can entrench itself on tablets fast enough to take this market. There are a lot of other options out there.

    craigleddy 12/5/2012 | 5:31:07 PM
    re: Netflix Beats Apple in Online Movies

    You're not the only with a limited appetite for watching video on a smartphone. Consumer research has shown that there is limited audience interest in that activity, despite all the industry hoopla. Remember when ESPN offered its own mobile phone? Proponents kept jamming it in my face and telling me how great it was to watch SportsCenter on a phone. Yea, but you couldn't see the damn ball!   

    msilbey 12/5/2012 | 5:31:05 PM
    re: Netflix Beats Apple in Online Movies

    Wow- I forgot all about the ESPN phone. 

    I'm sure Verizon has bigger plans for Viewdini on tablets, but even there it'll be interesting to see if any video portal app takes off. I believe tying it in to strong VOD libraries will be critical. But will a Comcast subscriber really think to turn to Verizon to find out what's available on demand? 

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