TECHNOLOGIES,MEDIA AND BROADCASTING
Amazon | September 29, 2022
Amazon announced upgrades to its industry-leading Fire TV family, including the next generation Fire TV Cube—Fire TV’s most powerful streaming media player yet—and Alexa Voice Remote Pro, a premium remote with an all-new Remote Finder and customizable buttons.“The all-new Fire TV Cube is a big step forward for Fire TV—it’s the fastest, most powerful, and most versatile streaming media player we’ve ever made,” said Daniel Rausch, vice president of Amazon Entertainment Devices and Services. “This Fire TV Cube’s powerful processing and Wi-Fi 6E support deliver an incredibly smooth streaming experience, and HDMI input means you can instantly extend the simplicity of Fire TV and hands-free Alexa control to your home entertainment system. With Alexa Voice Remote Pro, we’re making it easy to find a misplaced remote and get to the apps and content you love.”
Fire TV Cube—Enhanced Power and Speed
The third generation of Fire TV Cube is Amazon’s best Fire TV streaming media player yet, with a new octa-core 2.0 GHz processor that makes it 20% more powerful than the previous generation. The supercharged processor increases app launch speeds, making this Fire TV’s smoothest and most fluid streaming media player experience to date. Fire TV Cube can be controlled entirely hands-free with Alexa and includes support for cinematic 4K Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, HDR, and immersive Dolby Atmos audio. Plus, it offers a range of new features, including an HDMI input port, Wi-Fi 6E support, and Super Resolution Upscaling.
An industry-first, Fire TV Cube includes an HDMI input port, giving customers the flexibility to bring their entertainment devices together by directly connecting compatible cable boxes, Blu-ray players, and more devices. Now, customers can just say, Alexa, tune to ESPN on cable” instead of manually changing inputs to get to the content they want. With Fire TV Cube, customers can easily control live TV, cable boxes, and on-demand streaming via Fire TV’s Alexa Voice Remote or hands-free with Alexa. Fire TV Cube also features an additional USB port for easy connection to compatible webcams for video calling with Alexa Communications—simply say, Alexa, call mom” to connect with family or friends from the largest screen in the home.
Fire TV Cube is the first streaming media player in the industry with Wi-Fi 6E support, giving customers with a compatible router the ability to enjoy a smooth entertainment experience with less interference from other Wi-Fi devices in the home. It also features a new Ethernet port if you need a wired network connection.
New to Fire TV Cube is Super Resolution Upscaling, which provides enhanced picture quality by seamlessly converting HD content into 4K for greater detail, contrast, and clarity. With Super Resolution Upscaling, content—from movies originally made in HD to grainy family photos—will look sharper on a 4K display.
Alexa Voice Remote Pro—Remote Finder Feature, Customizable Buttons, and Backlighting
Alexa Voice Remote Pro is a new premium remote built to help customers spend more time streaming and less time searching for the remote. It introduces a Remote Finder feature to help customers find misplaced remotes more easily. Simply say, Alexa, find my remote” or use the dedicated Remote Finder button in Fire TV app, and Alexa Voice Remote Pro’s built-in speaker will emit an audible ring to attract your attention.
Two new customizable buttons make getting to your favorite content and Alexa commands quicker and easier. You can personalize your remote by programming these buttons to create one-touch shortcuts to favorite apps, channels, and anything Alexa can do. For example, you could choose to program a button to have Alexa dim the lights, check the weather, or start an Alexa Routine for movie night. Alexa Voice Remote Pro also includes motion-activated backlighting that automatically illuminates the buttons when the remote is picked up in low-light settings.
Alexa Voice Remote Pro is compatible with most Fire TV streaming media players, Amazon Fire TV smart TVs, and Smart TVs with Fire TV built-in.
Accessible and Sustainable
Fire TV Cube supports Audio Streaming for Hearing Aids (ASHA), allowing customers to directly connect compatible Bluetooth hearing aids. Both Fire TV Cube and Alexa Voice Remote Pro’s product and packaging are designed with sustainability in mind. Fire TV Cube is independently certified to use less energy and cause fewer of the emissions that contribute to climate change, earning the ENERGY STAR certification. As a part of Amazon’s commitment to helping preserve the natural world, Fire TV Cube and Alexa Voice Remote Pro both qualified for the Climate Pledge Friendly badge by achieving the Carbon Trust’s Reducing CO2 certifications, showing that their carbon footprints have been reduced year over year. To achieve this, both products used more-sustainable materials and implemented design changes to reduce their overall lifetime energy consumption. Fire TV Cube and Alexa Voice Remote Pro’s packaging is 100% recyclable in the U.S., made of wood fiber-based materials from responsibly managed forests or recycled sources.
Pricing and Availability
The all-new Fire TV Cube is available for pre-order today in the United States for $139.99. Alexa Voice Remote Pro is available for pre-order today on Amazon.com for $34.99 in the United States. To see which Fire TV devices are compatible with Alexa Voice Remote Pro, check the compatibility checker.Amazon today also announced the new Fire TV Omni QLED Series with the new Fire TV Ambient Experience.
Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Amazon strives to be Earth’s Most Customer-Centric Company, Earth’s Best Employer, and Earth’s Safest Place to Work. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Career Choice, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Just Walk Out technology, Amazon Studios, and The Climate Pledge are some of the things pioneered by Amazon. For more information, visit amazon.com/about and follow @AmazonNews.
NGL Collective and mitú | August 01, 2022
GoDigital Media Group ("GoDigital"), a global media and technology conglomerate focused on community, content, and commerce, announced the acquisition of NGL Collective with the backing of MEP Capital, a media and entertainment-focused investment firm.
As part of the acquisition, NGL Collective ("NGL"), the U.S.' leading New Generation Latinx digital-first media and entertainment company co-founded by actor and activist John Leguizamo and industry leader David Chitel is merging with GoDigital's mitú, a leading digital media publisher dedicated to inspiring, representing, and super-serving U.S. Latinos. The new entity will retain the name of NGL Collective, becoming the largest 100% Latino-focused digital-first Latinx media powerhouse in the country helping advertisers connect with this coveted audience regardless of age or language preference. NGL will cater to a vast network of Latinx creative and media partners, reaching U.S. Latinx communities via an array of social media and editorial sites, in-person and virtual community events, and published research.
"Latinx media consumption is exploding. NGL's expertise in Latinx media solutions and our shared commitment to culturally relevant creativity makes it a great addition to GoDigital's portfolio,This acquisition cements our foothold in the U.S. Latino media space."
-Jason Peterson Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GoDigital Media Group.
NGL's premium Latino video offerings on web, mobile, social, and connected television and #1 comScore ranking, coupled with mitú's community of more than 13 million social followers and web visitors, will provide an unmatched video-driven experience for consumers and advertisers.
Latinos are the largest ethnic group in the U.S., accounting for 11% of the buying power, and yet their contribution is consistently excluded in media and entertainment, said John Leguizamo, Co-founder and Partner of NGL Collective. "With NGL Collective and mitú's shared commitment to amplifying the voices of the Latinx community, our platforms and reach will expand. We will create more opportunities for Latinos in front of and behind the camera to speak directly to our community and influence how America sees us and how we see ourselves.
With the combined market presence of mitú brands, comprising wearemitú, somosmitú, FIERCE, crema, and Things That Matter, and NGL brands, consisting of Latina Moms, Hispanic Kitchen, and Hispanicize, the new NGL community will constitute the largest gathering of Latinx influencers, content creators, entrepreneurs, trendsetters, and media and entertainment innovators in the world. NGL's in-house Emmy®-nominated production team will also join forces with mitú's social content and brand studio team, which operates mitú Studios, a 14,000 square foot studio in Eastside Los Angeles.
"For ten years, mitú has built its legacy through creating communities and ensuring Latino voices are heard. Joining forces with NGL enables mitú to continue to build brands, cultural content and experiences that resonate with and represent the diverse U.S. Latino community, It's exciting to bring these companies together in a shared mission, with complementary solutions, and be part of leading mitú and NGL brands into the next decade."
-Vanessa Vigil, Chief Brand Officer, NGL Collective.
NGL will be helmed by current Chief Executive Officer and Founder David Chitel, with the creative support of Partner John Leguizamo. Vanessa Vigil will be elevated from General Manager of mitú to Chief Brand Officer of NGL. Ben Leff, NGL's Chief Operating Officer, Ben DeJesus, President of NGL Studios, and Joe Bernard, NGL's Chief Revenue Officer, will remain in the same capacities. Stephen Brooks, President of mitú and Latido Networks, will oversee the integration of the two companies, focusing on strengthening GoDigital's investments in Latinx media.
This unprecedented business combination solidifies our mission of being the #1 New Generation Latinx digital-first media and entertainment company in the U.S., concluded David Chitel, Chief Executive Officer of NGL Collective. The power and influence of U.S. Latinos merits a company like NGL exclusively focused on connecting advertisers with our coveted audience in-language, in-culture and in-context. The depth of our newly expanded offering inclusive of mitú makes us far and away the leader in our space.
Kroll Securities, LLC served as exclusive financial advisor to NGL Collective in connection with the transaction. Frost Miller LLP served as legal counsel to NGL and Stubbs Alderton & Markiles LLP served as legal counsel to GoDigital. GoDigital's transaction progress was coordinated by Zeevo Group LLC.
NGL Collective ("NGL") is the U.S.' leading independent Latinx media and entertainment solutions company connecting advertisers with the Latinx audience in-language, in-culture and in-context. Decades before it was cool, understood or even acceptable to talk about the NGL (New Generation Latinx) majority that is driving growth in America, NGL Collective was dedicated to modernizing the way advertisers reach and engage Latinx. As the group who coined the term "New Generation Latinx," we know NGLs best and help advertisers connect with them through our end-to-end offerings, spanning NGL Media, NGL Studios, NGL Social, NGL Virtual and NGL Solutions. www.nglcollective.com
About MEP Capital
MEP Capital ("MEP") is an investment firm focused on opportunities in the media and entertainment industries, providing support to the creative community. Across digital media, music, film & television, gaming, live events, and digital media, MEP partners with leading industry operators to finance projects, acquire assets, and invest in businesses. We invest through long-term oriented funds, with committed capital from institutions, family offices, and high-net-worth individuals. www.mepcap.com
mitú is a leading digital media company dedicated to inspiring, representing and super-serving U.S. Latinos. As a platform built for Latinos by Latinos, mitú is committed to representing both the collective and unique experiences of the 200% generation - 100% American and 100% Latino - through their multiple touch points in video, editorial, social, media, and research. www.wearemitu.com
About GoDigital Media Group
GoDigital Media Group ("GoDigital") is a diversified multinational conglomerate focused on technology-enabled and vertically integrated IP rights management through its operating subsidiaries. GoDigital is focused on the synergy of content, community, and commerce across music, video networks, and brands. www.godigitalmg.com
TECHNOLOGIES,MEDIA AND BROADCASTING
FreeWheel and Comscore | September 30, 2022
FreeWheel and Comscore announced a partnership that expands the Connected TV (CTV) contextual targeting capabilities available through FreeWheel’s demand-side platform, Beeswax. Media buyers using the Beeswax platform now have access to Comscore’s Predictive Audiences and CTV brand protection offering. The new offering will help marketers more easily identify valuable impressions and reach the right viewers in a privacy-forward manner across a fragmented premium video ecosystem.“This launch signifies a significant step forward for CTV advertising, as we continue to work alongside key industry partners to make programmatic CTV buying a more flexible, scalable and effective experience,” said Soo Jin Oh, Chief Strategy Officer, FreeWheel. Comscore has the technology, profile data, and scale that Beeswax clients need to target their audiences within relevant content on premium CTV inventory. And, with these capabilities built directly into the Beeswax platform, it’s now easier than ever for buyers to connect with their desired audiences in a brand safe environment.
The partnership was developed in response to increasing demand from clients for more contextual advertising solutions built for scale and certainty. Investment in contextual advertising across the industry has grown 21% year-over-year, as advertisers seek to better understand the content where they are buying programmatically, according to an IAB study. Accordingly, Beeswax clients are able to leverage Comscore’s taxonomy of attributes, which include Predictive Audiences, contextually driven audiences that cover all major industry verticals, bolstered by FreeWheel’s advanced technology.
The new contextual targeting offering is backed by Comscore’s contextual engine, which profiles hundreds of thousands of topics to provide a highly accurate appraisal of 1,700+ Predictive Audiences, content suitability and brand safety risks. Beeswax users can customize settings based on their unique needs to ensure contextual relevancy and brand safety filters along with cookie-free audience targeting are applied according to the needs of each campaign.
“In today’s landscape, the industry calls for a cohesive way for advertisers to reach their target audiences at scale across all screens, We are confident that with FreeWheel’s state-of-the-art technology and Comscore’s innovative CTV brand safety and unique-to-market Predictive Audiences, we will both be able to better support our clients in achieving campaign KPIs.”
-Rachel Gantz, General Manager, Activation Solutions at Comscore
Moving forward, FreeWheel will continue developing solutions and building partnerships to optimize the experience for Beeswax users, including those focusing on CTV buying.
FreeWheel empowers all segments of The New TV Ecosystem. We are structured to provide the full breadth of solutions the advertising industry needs to achieve their goals. We provide the technology, data enablement, and convergent marketplaces required to ensure buyers and sellers can transact across all screens, across all data types and all sales channels, in order to ensure the ultimate goal – results for marketers. With offices in New York, San Francisco, Chicago, London, Paris, Beijing and across the global, FreeWheel, A Comcast Company, stands to advocate for the entire industry through the FreeWheel Council for Premium Video. For more information, please visit https://www.freewheel.com/ and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Comscore (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a trusted partner for planning, transacting and evaluating media across platforms. With a data footprint that combines digital, linear TV, over-the-top and theatrical viewership intelligence with advanced audience insights, Comscore allows media buyers and sellers to quantify their multiscreen behavior and make business decisions with confidence. A proven leader in measuring digital and TV audiences and advertising at scale, Comscore is the industry’s emerging, third-party source for reliable and comprehensive cross-platform measurement.