Your digest of the week’s top media, entertainment and technology news.
The Premier League battle
Amazon and Facebook are contenders to bid for the streaming rights of the Premier League, likely to cause a financial boom according to The Guardian. Manchester United Vice Chairman Ed Woodward expects the technology giants to make a bid in the next round of rights sales. During a call with analysts he said: ”I think they will enter the mix… We are hearing that around the Premier League table and we are also hearing that from a European perspective in terms of interest in the Champions League and Europa rights.”
Fox TV revamped for UX
Fox has revamped its TV Everywhere experience with a new website and app including live streaming and on-demand viewing. Fox Networks Digital Consumer Group COO Brian Sullivan told The Hollywood Reporter everything was done with the user experience (UX) in mind, offering customers a great choice of content from National Geographic, Fox and FX. The new offering will cater to consumers specific interest and programme collections based on themes.
Zuckerberg rejects Trump’s bias accusation
The US president, Donald Trump accused Facebook of “anti-Trump” advertisements across its social networks, including its Twitter channel. Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg dismissed the claims and will surrender 3,000 political adverts to congressional investigators probing Russian interference in the US election according to the BBC analysis. The New York Times reported there is allegedly evidence that Twitter may have had a role to play in the Russian influence on the presidential campaign.
5G trials: Ericsson takes over China
China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has partnered with Ericsson in a collaboration to continue 5G trials. The 3.5 GHz band testing in Beijing was recognised as an important innovation according to Ericsson, successfully accomplished the trials to ensure customers will benefit from smarter networks.
Pinewood to sell TV investment
After just over one and a half years, Pinewood Group is set to sell its 50% stake in Pinewood Television, a company tasked with creating high-end TV drama production. The joint venture with StoryFirst had its first commission, the Benedict Cumberbatch series adaptation of The Child in Time, air on the BBC. It will be renamed as of 31 October 2017 and remain under the management of Helen Gregory reported The Hollywood Reporter.
Liberty Global boss names Amazon as biggest threat
Broadband TV News shared the fears of Liberty Global and Netflix alike, who see Amazon as their biggest threat. Liberty Global CEO Mike Fries said: “We don’t know what their game plan is…they are a great company, but what they do will have a great impact on our ecosystem.” Echoing this sentiment, Netflix Founder and CEO Reed Hastings said he also finds Amazon to be ”scary”.
Playbuzz raises additional $35ML
Israeli content company Playbuzz has raised $35 million, bringing its total funding to $66 million with ambition to invest and expand its branded content business. The online distribution platform is used by publishers including Time, ESPN, BBC and the Daily Telegraph to produce long-form, interactive articles.
Leonardo DiCaprio joins VR Startup
Becoming an investor in the five-year-old virtual reality (VR) startup, MindMaze, DiCaprio joins as an advisor helping the VR firm to expand from health care into media and entertainment. MindMaze CEO Tej Tadi said: DiCaprio “saw the potential to disrupt the way that content is made and consume.” In a statement published by Variety, DiCaprio said: ”MindMaze technology has already impacted the lives of many people, and it is poised to define the way we will experience and create content in the future.”