Posts tagged ‘multicast networks’

How Will You Cheer On Your Team This Fall?

While we still have a few days to go until fall officially begins on September 22, nothing announces the arrival of fall like the first football game of the season for sports fans!

From mobile TV to the new 4K TV, viewers have a variety of options when it comes to watching their favorite teams this football season. Mobile TV (launched just last month in several cities across the country) allows you to watch the big game on the go, and because it doesn’t require an Internet connection, there’s no buffering… even if 65,000 of your closest friends are in the stadium watching TV coverage at the same time!

In addition to airing college and NFL games, local TV stations are increasing their coverage of local high school football games, many airing them in their entirety on their multicast side channels. What is that, you ask? All local TV stations began broadcasting digital signals following the 2009 Digital Television Transition (DTV). Because digital signals are more efficient, stations are able to broadcast additional channels with niche, local content (still free to viewers with a TV antenna). Want to know which stations in your area are broadcasting high school sports? Check their websites or follow them through social media to learn more.

Broadcast TV continues to provide Americans with more options for how they can watch their favorite TV programs. How will you watch your favorite teams this season?

September 12, 2012 at 9:56 am Leave a comment

Bounce TV – History in the making

It was mentioned in a recent blog post that three new multicast broadcast networks have launched in the past year to serve the African American community.  We have introduced you to two of the three – KIN TV and Soul of the South TV. Rounding out our introduction of each of these trailblazing networks that are bringing valuable new (and free!) programming to viewers, here is an overview of Bounce TV, which made history by becoming the first multicast network focused on the African American community.

Launched in September of 2011, the founders of Bounce TV include Martin Luther King III, former Atlanta mayor and former Ambassador Andrew Young, and Rob Hardy and Will Packer, co-founders of Rainforest Films.

In honor of February’s Black History Month, the network is debuting its own original documentaries, “Our History,” covering topics from slavery to the Civil Rights movement to the explosion of Hip Hop each Wednesday night during the month (check here for the schedule).

Said Ambassador Young, “At Bounce, we believe we celebrate the African American community every month, every week, every day. Yet it is important as the country focuses on the contributions of African Americans to the advancement of civilization that we participate in a significant and meaningful manner. I strongly encourage people of all races and all ethnicities to watch Bounce TV every day, but particularly Wednesday nights in February.”

Bounce TV airs twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week on the digital signals of local television stations. Click here for broadcast information in your local area, and visit our content page to learn more about the numerous new channels available for free to viewers with a digital antenna.

February 29, 2012 at 4:42 pm 1 comment

KIN TV – coming soon to your area?

KIN TV LogoAs mentioned in a previous blog post, we are profiling three new multicast broadcast networks focused on serving the African American Community.  Today we are focusing on KIN TV.

KIN TV is a partnership between MGM and Lee Gaither (formerly the Executive Vice President and Head of Programming at TV One as well as senior vice president of programming at NBC Universal).

KIN TV also has the backing of former NBA star and current TNT basketball announcer/analyst Charles Barkley, who is apparently playing a very active role as a co-founder of the new network.

The network will be a 24/7 digital broadcast network that “will feature a wide range of entertainment, lifestyle, self-help and news programming designed to entertain, inform and inspire modern African-American viewers.”

KIN TV plans to launch in June 2012 in multiple markets around the country. Check out the KIN TV website or Facebook page to keep up to date about this new network, and visit our content page to learn more about the numerous new channels available for free to viewers with a digital antenna.

February 27, 2012 at 3:38 pm 2 comments

It’s cool to have rabbit ears again

Digital_AntennaIt’s not just those in the broadcasting community talking about The Best Deal Around anymore. Over-the-air antennas, affectionately dubbed “rabbit ears” are getting more coverage than ever these days, from high-profile tech blogs like Gizmodo to articles in the well-respected publications like Time and Wall Street Journal.

Why all the interest? Aren’t rabbit ears a relic of the past?

On the contrary – as  Avner Ronen, chief executive of Boxee, says in a recent Wall Street Journal article, “’Many consumers don’t realize [that by using rabbit ears] they can get these channels over the air in HD for free…’.”

Additionally, “the number of American households wired with only broadband and broadcast TV jumped 23% to 5.1 million in the third quarter of 2011 compared with the year-earlier period, according to a recent Nielsen study.” (Read more).

With this increase in households using only broadband and broadcast TV, Gizmodo notes that “Rabbit ears are a perfect complement to streaming; they’re inexpensive, and they let you watch a good amount of ‘event’ programming [such as awards programs, major sport events, etc.] live.” (Read more).

And, as Time points out, “Most places in the U.S. can get on average 30 to 45 channels over the air” for free. (Read more).

It’s not surprising more viewers are realizing the exciting and diverse channels all offered for free through broadcast television. And an affordable antenna is just the thing to help bring a world of high-quality content into your home. Could it be that rabbit ears are actually cool? We think millions of TV viewers would agree that answer is a resounding “yes.”

Sign-up for email alerts from TheFutureofTV.org  and check back on this blog to keep up on the latest news impacting free and local television.

February 23, 2012 at 3:05 pm 5 comments

Soul of the South

As mentioned in a previous blog post, we are profiling three new multicast broadcast networks focused on serving the African American Community. Today we are focusing on Soul of the South.

Soul of the South is the brainchild of former Heart and Soul publisher Edwin Avent, Carl McCaskill and Larry Morton, founder of Retro TV. The network will launch during the first quarter of 2012, with a focus on reaching southern African American viewers.

We were able to catch up with Soul of the South Chairman and CEO Edwin Avent at a recent Future of TV Coalition news conference:

Soul of the South intends to have in-depth coverage of news that matters to the African American community, including a two-hour morning news show, a one hour evening news program and “”Capitol Eye,” an additional half-hour hosted news and opinion show focusing on Southern capitals and politics.” (Read more).

Hollywood Reporter, which closely follows the music, motion picture and television industry reports: Soul of the South “plans to do some original programming such as a hip hop music show, a program featuring family reunions, and Drum Majors, about music at mostly black colleges.”

Also of note is that new networks targeting African-American viewers, like Soul of the South, are choosing broadcasters’ free over the air multicast channels over cable to best reach their desired audience.

Make sure to follow Soul of the South’s progress via their website or Facebook page as they launch this new venture, and visit our content page to learn more about the numerous new channels available for free to viewers with a digital antenna.

February 14, 2012 at 12:09 pm 1 comment

The Changing Face of Broadcast TV

Broadcast television has come a long way since the days when there were only three networks (and thus only three channels!). Today broadcasters are focused on new innovations that enable them to deliver an ever expanding variety of new channels and viewing options for free to homes with a digital antenna.

When local TV stations began broadcasting with digital signals in 2009, it allowed them the flexibility to offer more channels for viewers through what is known as multicasting. These multicast channels are indicated as such on your TV. For example, if the primary TV channel is 53, then its multicast channels might be 53.1, 53.2 and 53.3 and they can each carry different programming.

Broadcasters are delivering on the promise of the digital TV transition, adding a dizzying array of new multicast channels, all available to viewers free of charge. In fact, in cities like Los Angeles, viewers can now receive more than 50 local television channels for free from local broadcasters.

For an ever-increasing population of minority viewers in America, broadcast television is offering exciting choices in ethnic, culturally relevant and in-language programming. For example:

  • In New York City, of the 32 multicast channels, 10 offer ethnic programming.
  • In Los Angeles, of the 57 multicast channels, 31 offer ethnic programming, including Spanish, Chinese, Armenian, Korean and Vietnamese.
  • And in Washington, D.C., 11 of the 24 multicast channels offer ethnic programming geared toward Spanish, Russian, French, Japanese, Arabic and Chinese.

Across the United States, broadcasters are also adding more mobile channels (known as mobile DTV) –  free broadcasts accessible on properly equipped mobile devices. This allows viewers to watch their favorite local news and network programs on smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices without the need for a wireless data connection (and without data streaming fees).

See the stations in your area that are currently, or soon will be, broadcasting to mobile devices (information and graphic courtesy of SNL Kagan).

New data released from research and analysis firm SNL Kagan shows that the number of live, over-the-air broadcast TV channels has nearly doubled in the last year alone, jumping from 2,518 channels at the end of 2010 to 4,552 channels at the end of 2011. SNL Kagan reports, “That year-over-year increase of 2,034 live digital and mobile TV channels in the U.S. has a lot to do with expanded multicast network programming options from new startups such as Antenna TV, Bounce TV, Live Well, This TV, Me-TV, The Cool TV, The Country Network and others expanding their reach to more than 600 stations.” Learn more about multicast networks here.

SNL Kagan also reports that, “2012 should also be groundbreaking for broadcasters in that it will bring the first commercially available launch of live mobile TV channels on a major wireless carrier’s handsets …which includes 70-plus stations covering 33 TV markets and 50% of the U.S. population.”

Read the entire SNL Kagan report here.

Local TV stations are also engaging their viewers on multiple platforms in addition to traditional TV, offering streaming video on their website, connecting via social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and offering mobile apps for their viewers’ smartphones.

Broadcasters’ embrace of multicasting and mobile DTV is great news for viewers, who now have more choices than ever in free, over the air programming and viewing options. Whether it’s the high school football game, a Spanish telenovela, a night of programs celebrating Black History Month, or news on an impending storm, local stations are delivering diverse and innovative content for every viewer on broadcast TV.

The future of TV is now!

February 10, 2012 at 8:32 pm Leave a comment

Black History Month: Celebrating a Historical Moment in Broadcast Television

February is Black History Month and the perfect time to draw attention to some of the latest, innovative, free over-the-air broadcast television networks that have been launched to serve African-American viewers. At least three new multicast broadcast networks, Bounce TV, KINTV and Soul of the South Network, are bringing their groundbreaking programs to various stations around the country (check each network’s website for broadcast information in your local area). Each network will offer a mix of programming with a focus on reaching African-American communities with exciting new cultural content.

Digital broadcasting is all about bringing consumers content relevant to their lives and communities, while seamlessly integrating the latest technologies in TV entertainment. The Future of TV is happy to highlight the ways these new partners are bringing that content to their viewing audiences.

The launch of these three networks is a significant moment in black history – a realization of the promises of the digital television transition. All of these networks have launched in just the past year, sure to be followed by the launch of even more networks designed to meet American viewers’ need for increased diversity in programming. Whether it’s in-language programming, sports, entertainment, news, faith-based programs or hyperlocal content, the future of television is here, and it’s brighter than ever!

Stay tuned – in the weeks to come we’ll be profiling each of these new networks and the great new programming they are bringing to viewers across the country.

February 3, 2012 at 6:50 pm 3 comments


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