Archive for the ‘VOD’ Category

Multichoice’s Future Plans

June 21, 2007

Today, in an article on ITWeb, Multichoice‘s CEO spoke about the companies future plans to compete in the South African television market.

The introduction of mobile TV, IPTV and VOD forms part of the broadcasters key strategy of new platform development and delivery channels.

New offerings from the company will include:

  1. DSTV Mobile – Mobile TV via DVB-H to mobile devices
  2. DSTV Broadband – VHS quality content via the DSTV website. The ability to view or download content that has appeared on the DSTV channels.
  3. DSTV Extra – Video on Demand (VOD). Content automatically downloaded to the PVR decoder unlocked for a fee to be viewed at any time. Expected end of 2007.

About 18 months ago, whilst working for Multichoice, I pitched the concept of PVR Podcasting to the Exco. I produced the following video explaining the concept.

The idea was to simply allow for user generated content such as Podcasts to be automatically downloaded to a PVR decoder. Users would subscribe to community produced shows and have them streamed to their decoders via satellite. Imagine submitting a home made movie featuring your new house and then having all your friends and family view it on their decoders right in their living rooms. No need for a computer, a slow internet connection, downloads, live streaming etc.

Here is the video.


Anyone want Joost invites?

April 18, 2007

I managed to get my hands on a Joost invite this morning.

I only managed to play with it for about 10 minutes before leaving for work this morning. I downloaded the 11mb install and installed it on my wife’s Vista desktop. The installation was quick and painless and I was up and running in minutes.

The UI is really slick and intuitive. It defaults to full screen mode and the menus are displayed over your video as you move your mouse. Widgets like chat, RSS feeds etc can easily be added over your video.

The only problem I had was that the video stuttered over my ASDL connection. I’d imagine that I need at least 1mb connection for a smooth play-back experience. The choice of available content was pretty impressive for a new service.

I’m looking forward to playing with it and getting a glimpse of the future.

PS: Drop me a email at shaun.trennery at if you’d like an invite.


Comment posted by Ryan CrawCour
at 1/1/0001 12:00:00 AM
Ryan CrawCour

what i’d actually love to know is what you were watching on Joost when this screenshot was taken ….. 😛

April, 2007 2:53 PM (

VOD: Is DRM harmful?

September 1, 2006

This excerpt from a BetaNews article makes me think it is.

A crack in the digital rights management software for Windows Media caused a British television network to suspend its movie and sports content download service while it updates the DRM on its files. A program called FairUse4WM is able to strip the copy protection from files.

“In order to make an essential update to the Sky by broadband security system, we are sorry that access to all movies and some sports content has been temporarily suspended,” TV network BSkyB said in a statement on its site. “We will keep you posted on progress and apologise for any inconvenience.”

Link to rest of the article

Amazon opens video download shop

September 1, 2006

Amazon have launched Amazon unbox, a video download shop that offers movies, television shows and other videos. The downloaded content plays in Amazon’s own software player as well as on 6 portable devices including the Zen Vision, Zen Vision:M, Toshiba Gigabeat S, Archos AV 500 and 700, and iRiver PMC.

Similiar to iTunes, TV Shows cost $1.99 and movies cost from $7.99 to $14.99. A typical 1 hour movie is 1.2 Gig is size and customers can start watching the content while it is being downloaded.

I’m afraid this service is for US customers only. This usuage note from the Amazon unbox site:

Usage: US customers only. You can keep purchased videos on 2 PCs and 2 portable video players at the same time. Learn more

System Requirements: Requires Windows XP.


VOD Report

August 1, 2006

Looking forward to Video-On-Demand services coming to South Africa, an interesting report has been recently written that shows that viewers who have access to VOD services still buy DVDs.”But a recent study by Forrester Research, a technology consulting firm, suggests that on-demand movies hardly cannibalize DVD sales. Households where someone recently watched an on-demand movie bought only 1 percent fewer DVD’s each year than they had before they discovered the cable service, which amounts to about one-tenth of a disc. The survey contacted 4,581 households in late 2005; 321 said they had watched an on-demand movie within the last three months.”Link