Programming’s Heavy Hitters Will Make Presence Felt at CES

By Alex Silverman

The convergence of programming and distribution into an all-in-one video business will be on display this week at CES 2018, as media stalwarts and digital disruptors come together to offer insight into where the business is headed. OTT and streaming video will once again be a well-covered subject, as more established players embrace direct-to-consumer offerings.

Disney, whose transition to OTT is perhaps the most-anticipated in the industry, will be well represented. Disney evp, publishing and digital media Andrew Sugerman’s Wednesday afternoon appearance on the “State of the Stream” panel is a chance to glean more insight into the company’s plans for its supposed Netflix competitor (expected in 2019). Disney ABC Television Group pres Ben Sherwood is also slated to discuss streaming during a “headliner conversation” Wednesday morning.

Also on Wednesday, Discovery pres/CEO David Zaslav will participate in a “Future of Video” panel alongside A+E Networks pres/CEO Nancy Dubuc, YouTube chief business officer Robert Kyncl and Comcast Cable pres of advertising Marcien Jenckes, among others. Zaslav, who will likely address the company’s pending merger with Scripps Networks, has been vocal about what he perceives to be a lack of quality virtual MVPD options in the US market. Fox, Scripps, Turner, Starz and NBCU are among the other programming groups represented in this year’s lineup. Digital players like Amazon, Hulu and Facebook —all of whom have multibillion-dollar content budgets this year—are also sending execs to discuss the OTT landscape. In addition to streaming video, attendees can expect to hear plenty about emerging technologies like 5G, the Internet of Things and AI.

The broadcast industry will have a revelatory moment Tuesday when the Advanced Television Systems Committee hosts a ceremony commemorating the first complete set of standards for ATSC 3.0 deployment. ATSC pres Mark Richer, CTA pres/CEO Gary Shapiro and NAB pres/CEO Gordon Smith will lead the celebration surrounding the hotly anticipated advancement. On the show floor, Comcast is focusing its efforts this year on its home automation business as one of the featured exhibitors in the Smart Home Marketplace. Turner is the presenting sponsor of the CES Sports Zone, a 4,900-square-foot installment at the Sands. Scripps will host tech consultant Shelly Palmer’s annual “Best of CES This Year” address in its invitation-only space just off the show floor. Palmer will also interview the Property Brothers of HGTV fame about home technology.

On the regulatory front, FCC chmn Ajit Pai withdrew from his highly anticipated appearance in the wake of his rollback of net neutrality. Still, a session featuring three FCC commissioners—Republicans Brendan Carr and Mike O’Rielly alongside Democrat Mignon Clyburn—could produce fireworks of its own. Clyburn has been vocal about her disdain for the FCC nixing net neutrality. FTC commish Terrell McSweeny and NTIA asst secretary David Redl are also slated to sit on the panel moderated by CTA vp, regulatory affairs Julie Kearney. Other hot regulatory topics will likely include spectrum allocation, infrastructure regulations, 5G deployment practices and IoT. Check back with Cablefax throughout the week for dispatches from CES.

The post Programming’s Heavy Hitters Will Make Presence Felt at CES appeared first on Cablefax.

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Posted on: January 8, 2018

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