MEDIA AND BROADCASTING

Xfinite and Eros Now Expand Partnership for Blockchain-based Content Engagement Program on Algorand

Eros Now, Xfinite | June 10, 2021

Xfinite and Eros Now, a leading over-the-top (OTT) South Asian entertainment platform owned by global entertainment company Eros STX Global Corporation, announced it had deepened its partnership with Xfinite's Mzaalo platform, a gamified video streaming service on track to have 10M users by year-end. The association further establishes Eros Now's footprint in advertising video-on-demand (AVOD), a still-developing segment of the India streaming market with significant growth potential, while allowing Eros Now to continue building its core subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service.

This partnership also adds to the 25 premium linear TV feeds and VOD platforms and plans to expand further to reach 200 content partners. Given Xfinite's innovative business model, this agreement also puts ErosSTX in a leadership position regarding digital asset growth and the use of blockchain technology. Algorand will serve as the foundational blockchain infrastructure as Xfinite selected the scalable blockchain to accommodate its accelerating adoption.

Mzaalo is a decentralized application ("dApp") built on Algorand blockchain technology which operates a gamified streaming service offering more than 15,000 hours of premium content, as well as new mechanisms for engaging with content and other consumers. The Mzaalo dApp provides consumers with free access to premium content, including films, original series, short-form content from Eros Now and other media platforms, and a range of interactive features. Mzaalo consumers are rewarded for their engagement via enhanced social engagement features and innovative incentivization mechanisms, including a digital token – the XET token.

Xfinite is an entertainment platform built around the digital token, XET, an Algorand Standard Asset. The XET token serves as the native currency of the Xfinite ecosystem and functions as a unique value exchange and governance mechanism for all stakeholders, including users, brands and influencers, and content producers. The XET token will offer its holders many benefits, including unique value exchange and tap into economic incentives the Xfinite platform provides. Mzaalo, Xfinite's first entertainment application, provides consumers with free access to premium content, including films, original series, short-form content from Eros Now, and other media platforms, as well as a range of interactive features. Mzaalo consumers can earn rewards for their engagement that can be spent across fan tokens, merchandise, games, and charitable giving through over 500 brand partners.

By "tokenizing" attention and engagement, consumers will be rewarded for their increased viewership, and brands and influencers are given new ways to engage with their audiences. In this new ecosystem, consumers are treated equitably as partners in the relationship, and brands and influencers can vastly increase their ROI through hyper-targeted and measurable user engagement. The ErosSTX partnership with Mzaalo is the first of its kind anywhere in the OTT space globally.

India and emerging markets worldwide are characterized by a crowded digital marketing space growing exponentially as brands shift away from traditional media such as print and television to capture digital growth. In 2020, India had nearly 700 million internet users across the country. This figure was projected to grow to over 974 million users by 2025, indicating a big market potential in internet services for the South Asian country. India is now on the cusp of a massive revolution with digital marketing making inroads and brands looking beyond urban markets. The tokenization approach offered by Mzaalo to monetizing engagement is uniquely suited to the Indian digital consumer who currently has a plethora of content choices available.

About Eros Now
Eros Now, a division of Eros STX Global Corporation, is the world's leading Indian OTT platform with over 19 million premium paid subscribers and 224 million registered users from over 150 countries across the globe. It offers endless entertainment hosting one of the largest movie libraries (over 12,000 digital titles), as well as premium original episodic series, music videos unmatched in quantity and quality. Eros Now also has a deep library of short-form content, totaling over 4,400 short-form videos, including trailers, original short exclusive interviews, and marketing shorts. Eros Now was named the 'Best OTT Platform of the Year 2019' at the British Asian Media Awards. The platform has also won awards for original content and marketing at the SCREENXX 2020.

About Xfinite
Xfinite is a blockchain-based platform designed to re-establish trust between consumers, content creators, and publishers. Through viewer-based rewards, the Xfinite ecosystem helps the media and entertainment industry combat advertising fraud by increasing transparency and creating a new habit of engagement. Xfinite has established partnerships with global corporations to drive innovation and create new use cases for blockchain technology. Recent collaborations include: Dailyhunt, which has 280 million active users; SpiceJet, which annually flies +60 million passengers across India; and Eros Now which has 36.2M paying subscribers and 216M registered users.

Spotlight

They’re not hyper and casual, just hyper-casual. These games are all the rage these days. Whether you have 5 minutes or 5 hours to play, hyper-casual games are the perfect way to fill the gaps in your day with some good ol’ gamin’. How did this genre become so popular? Are hyper-casual games overnight successes or have they been slowly gaining momentum towards a singularity of gaming?

Spotlight

They’re not hyper and casual, just hyper-casual. These games are all the rage these days. Whether you have 5 minutes or 5 hours to play, hyper-casual games are the perfect way to fill the gaps in your day with some good ol’ gamin’. How did this genre become so popular? Are hyper-casual games overnight successes or have they been slowly gaining momentum towards a singularity of gaming?

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MEDIA AND BROADCASTING

MEO expands Connected TV and Cloud DVR services with Velocix

Velocix | July 01, 2022

Carrier-grade video streaming and ad tech supplier Velocix has announced that its content delivery network (CDN) and recording management (VRM) software has been deployed by MEO, a consumer brand of Altice Portugal, to expand its Apple TV and Android TV based video services. MEO, Portugal’s largest pay TV provider by market share, provides internet, video, telephony, and mobile services to more than 6 million homes and businesses in the region. In addition to boosting the capacity of its video streaming network with Velocix’s field-proven CDN platform, MEO launched Velocix’s new software as a service recording management platform, VRM, to transition time-shifted TV recording workflows into cloud-based technologies. “We needed to expand our streaming network and advance our recording architecture to keep pace with robust subscriber demand for our OTT TV services based on Apple TV and Android TV, along with mobile devices. Velocix’s technology is reliable, flexible, and cloud-ready, which is critically important to us as we grow and evolve our business.” -Miguel Jardim, Head of TV Services, Engineering Network at MEO Anthony Berkeley, CEO at Velocix, said: We are delighted to extend our successful relationship with MEO, and excited that our cloud-ready software solutions are helping to bring next-generation video services to consumers across Portugal. About Velocix continues to enhance its product suite with new cloud-capable features and advanced software modules. The company’s CDN solution is used by the world's largest and most successful pay TV providers to power live, on-demand, and time-shifted video services. The new multi-tenant VRM platform streamlines video recording workflows and reduces cost by providing a cloud-hosted management framework that spans multiple middleware platforms and recording engines.About Velocix Velocix is the world’s leading provider of content delivery, origin and storage, and stream personalisation software and we are Making Video Personal, on every connected screen. Our technology is used to engage, entertain, and inform millions of people around the globe, every single day. We help consumers connect with the content they love by building products that are more responsive to personal viewing preferences, making every video experience more rewarding. We work closely with our customers, including telecommunications, cable, and online video service providers, to help them navigate a rapidly changing video market, so they can lead the transformation, compete more effectively, and grow their businesses. Velocix is part of Lumine Group, which is an operating group of Constellation Software (TSX:CSU). Visit velocix.com

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PRODUCTS

All-New PlayStation Plus Game Subscription Service From Sony Interactive Entertainment Launches in North and South America Today

Sony Interactive Entertainment | June 14, 2022

Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) announced the launch of its all-new PlayStation®Plus game subscription service in North and South America, providing more flexibility and value for gaming fans. The newly enhanced PlayStation Plus offers a compelling, high-quality game catalog* across a diverse content portfolio. With the all-new PlayStation Plus, players can discover and engage with more content than ever before and deepen their connection with the PlayStation community through shared experiences. Today’s launch in the Americas will be followed by Europe and Australia in late June, completing the global roll-out that started in Asia in late May. "The global launch of the all-new PlayStation Plus represents a massive evolution of our game subscription service offering, and we are pleased that fans worldwide can now enjoy hundreds of fantastic games available in the PlayStation Plus catalog, The high caliber of content is what sets PlayStation Plus apart, and the service will continue to grow with new monthly game offerings that include some of the most celebrated titles on PlayStation platforms. We are truly grateful for the passionate support of our PlayStation community over the years.” -Jim Ryan, President and CEO, Sony Interactive Entertainment. Below are the benefit options of the all-new PlayStation Plus. PlayStation Plus Essential Benefits: Provides the same benefits that PlayStation Plus members are getting today, such as PS4 and PS5 monthly games, online multiplayer access, exclusive discounts, cloud storage and more. There are no changes for existing PlayStation Plus members in this plan and pricing remains the same. Price United States: $9.99 monthly / $24.99 quarterly / $59.99 yearly Europe: €8.99 monthly / €24.99 quarterly / €59.99 yearly United Kingdom: £6.99 monthly / £19.99 quarterly / £49.99 yearly PlayStation Plus Extra Benefits: Provides all the benefits from the Essential plan and adds a catalog of up to 400* of the most enjoyable PlayStation®4 (PS4™) and PlayStation®5 (PS5™) games - including blockbuster hits from our PlayStation Studios catalog and third-party partners. Games in the Extra plan are downloadable for play. Price: United States: $14.99 monthly / $39.99 quarterly / $99.99 yearly Europe: €13.99 monthly / €39.99 quarterly / €99.99 yearly United Kingdom: £10.99 monthly / £31.99 quarterly / £83.99 yearly PlayStation Plus Premium** Benefits: Provides all the benefits from Essential and Extra plans and adds up to 340* additional games, including: PlayStation®3 games available via cloud streaming*** A catalog of beloved classic games from the original PlayStation®, PlayStation®2 (PS2™), and PlayStation®Portable (PSP™) generation. Adds cloud streaming access*** for original PlayStation, PS2, PSP and PS4 games. Time-limited game trials is also offered in this plan, so customers can try select games before they buy. Price: United States: $17.99 monthly / $49.99 quarterly / $119.99 yearly Europe: €16.99 monthly / €49.99 quarterly / €119.99 yearly United Kingdom: £13.49 monthly / £39.99 quarterly / £99.99 yearly The new PlayStation Plus game catalog will include breathtaking titles from dozens of talented studios across the globe, including PlayStation Studios developers such as Insomniac Games, Naughty Dog, and Sucker Punch, and third-party partners such as Rockstar Games, Square Enix, WB Games and more. At launch, the PlayStation Plus game catalog will include titles such as Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Cut, Marvel’s Guardian of the Galaxy, Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, NBA 2K22, and Red Dead Redemption 2. The hundreds of games available in the PlayStation Plus games catalog will continue to refresh and evolve over time, so there is always something new for gamers to play. Classic games coming to PlayStation Plus include beloved hits such as Ape Escape, Syphon Filter and Tekken 2. Some of these classic games will show improved frame rates and higher quality resolution than its original launch versions. Additionally, select games from the original PlayStation and PSP generation will include a new user experience with menus that allow players to save their game at any time, or even rewind the game to replay a specific section. At each regional launch, the current cloud-based subscription game service, PlayStation®Now, will transition into the new PlayStation Plus service. As a result, current customers will migrate over to PlayStation Plus Premium with cloud streaming access until their current subscription expires – with no increase to their current subscription fees at launch. Additionally, 11 markets*** in Eastern Europe will launch with cloud streaming access in June, for a total of 30 markets with cloud streaming access. Currently live in select Asia markets, including Japan, this all-new PlayStation Plus builds upon more than 25 years of SIE’s expertise in gaming innovation and strong legacy in network services. PlayStation Plus initially launched in 2010 and was the first console membership service to provide a regular refreshed library of monthly games. PlayStation Now launched in 2014 and was the first game console subscription streaming service. With the newly enhanced PlayStation Plus, SIE is taking game subscription services to the next level by delivering even greater value to gamers. For more information, please visit: https://www.playstation.com/ps-plus/ About Sony Interactive Entertainment Recognized as a global leader in interactive and digital entertainment, Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) is responsible for the PlayStation® brand and family of products and services. PlayStation has delivered innovation to the market since the launch of the original PlayStation in Japan in 1994. The PlayStation family of products and services include PlayStation®5, PlayStation®4, PlayStation®VR, PlayStation™Store, PlayStation®Plus, and acclaimed PlayStation software titles from PlayStation Studios. Headquartered in San Mateo, California, SIE is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Group Corporation and has global functions in California, London, and Tokyo.

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VENDORS AND SUPPLIERS,BUSINESS

Amazon Celebrates Prime Members With New, Exclusive Offers and Experiences

Amazon Prime | July 08, 2022

Ahead of Prime’s biggest savings event exclusively for members, Prime Day on July 12-13, Amazon announced new offers and experiences exclusively for members. Starting today, Prime members in the U.S. can enjoy a free, one-year Grubhub+ membership with no food-delivery fees on eligible orders. Members can use this new perk in more than 4,000 cities with hundreds of thousands of restaurants across the country when ordering on Grubhub. Amazon is also announcing exciting, exclusive Prime member content for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. Additionally, Amazon is also unveiling exclusive deals for Prime members ahead of Thursday Night Football’s anticipated launch, as well as exclusive experiences for members at the upcoming Ultimate Crown streamers vs. gamers battle featuring MrBeast and Ninja.In anticipation of Prime Video’s most eagerly awaited new series launching on September 2, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, Prime members globally can enjoy 48-hour advance access to a never-before-seen 60-second exclusive sneak peek starting today. This week, Amazon also surprised lucky Prime members from around the world with an opportunity to attend the London Global Premiere of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power in August. Ahead of the first exclusive Thursday Night Football game kicking off on Prime Video on September 15, Amazon is offering members Prime Day savings a week early. Exclusive deals range from home entertainment devices, like Fire TV smart TVs, to fan gear for members to prepare their living rooms and get ready for game day. “Being the first to watch a sneak peek of one of the most highly anticipated shows of 2022 or ordering your favorite takeout while watching a football game on a TV you snagged for a great price—that’s the promise of Prime, and there’s never been a better time to take advantage of all the membership has to offer, Prime already delivers great value for members. These new exclusive offers and experiences show how a single Prime membership unlocks a whole world of potential.” -Jamil Ghani, vice president of Amazon Prime. Whether members want to have an epic, cinematic experience streaming the new The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power series or order wings for their game-day parties, Prime has them covered—all within their one membership. For visual assets related to this news, visit aboutamazon.com/primeexclusives. Get Your Grub On Starting today, all Prime members in the U.S. can get even more delivered to their door with a Prime membership. Members can now enjoy a free, full one-year Grubhub+ membership valued at $9.99 per month—at no added cost to their Prime membership. To activate this deal, members simply visit amazon.com/grubhub. This new offer includes unlimited, $0 food delivery fees on orders over $12 as well as exclusive perks for Grubhub+ members and rewards like free food and order discounts. Plus, diners can “eat good while doing good” by opting into Grubhub’s Donate the Change program, a donation-matching initiative that raised more than $25 million in 2021 alone, benefiting more than 20 charitable organizations across the country. Additional terms and eligibility rules apply. Exclusive Sneak Peek Inside Middle-earth The highly anticipated series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power premieres exclusively on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories around the world on Friday, September 2. J.R.R. Tolkien’s fabled Second Age of Middle-earth’s history takes center stage in this epic drama set thousands of years before the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings books. In this 60-second sneak peek, available as a first-look exclusively to Prime members for 48 hours starting July 6 at 3 a.m. EDT, an ominous sign in the night sky raises questions for the inhabitants of Middle-earth. Prime members can sign into their account and go to amazon.com/RingsOfPower to view the exclusive sneak peek of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power and add the series to their Watchlist. This week, 20 Prime members around the world who added themselves to The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Watchlist on Prime Video were the lucky recipients of an exclusive invitation with a guest to attend the London Global Premiere in August of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. For these lucky fans of Middle-earth, this will be an unforgettable experience. Deals to Kick-Off Football Season Right The first ever Thursday Night Football game exclusively on Prime Video is right around the corner. Legendary announcer Al Michaels and Emmy-winning analyst Kirk Herbstreit will be in the booth for Thursday Night Football, which will include fan-favorite interactive features like X-Ray and Next Gen Stats powered by AWS. Anchor Charissa Thompson hosts the pregame, halftime, and postgame shows, with veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, Pro Football Hall of Famer Tony Gonzalez, and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman serving as analysts. In anticipation of Thursday Night Football’s kickoff on Prime Video on September 15, Prime members will have access to exclusive deals on home entertainment devices and more, along with some Fan Shop deals on NFL-licensed products. Fans can upgrade their living rooms for an optimized Thursday Night Football watching experience with deals on Fire TV smart TVs and streaming sticks. Score deals on NFL licensed products in the Fan Shop: Save up to 15% now through July 11 on home accessories (including bed comforters, blankets, beach towels, and more) and electronics (including Bluetooth speakers and earbuds, wireless charging mousepads, and more). Save on Smart TVs and more now through July 11: Amazon Fire TV 55-inch 4-Series 4K UHD smart TV – Save up to 45% Amazon Fire TV 50-inch 4-Series 4K UHD smart TV – Save up to 45% Amazon Fire TV 55-inch Omni Series UHD smart TV – Save up to 46% Hisense U6 Series 50-inch 4K QLED Smart Fire TV – Save up to 25% Insignia 24-inch HD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 47% Insignia 32-inch HD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 44% Insignia 43-inch Class F30 Series 4K UHD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 36% Insignia 50-inch Class F30 Series 4K UHD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 40% Insignia 55-75-inch Class F30 Series 4K UHD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 30%-38% Pioneer 43-50-inch 4K UHD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 38%-40% Toshiba 43-75-inch C350-Series 4K UHD Smart Fire TV – Save up to 30% Fire TV Cube – Save up to 50% Fire TV Stick – Save up to 58% (available starting July 7 at 12:01 a.m. EDT through July 11) Prime Video is the first streaming service to air a season-long exclusive national broadcast package with the NFL. Viewers can stream from the web at amazon.com or by using the Prime Video app, which is available on smartphones, tablets, set-top boxes, game consoles, or select smart TVs. The games will also stream live on Twitch and will be available on over-the-air TV stations in the two home markets of the competing teams. For all the latest information regarding Thursday Night Football on Prime Video, visit amazon.com/TNF and follow NFL on Prime on Twitter. Tune in to Ultimate Crown: MrBeast vs Ninja On July 9 between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. EDT, Prime members around the world can tune in to Ultimate Crown on Twitch.tv/Crown and Prime Video to watch MrBeast and Ninja battle it out in League of Legends with an all-star lineup of gamers and content creators live from Las Vegas at the HyperX Arena. Prime members have a chance to attend in-person or participate in live chats to win exclusive giveaways and gifted subscriptions. For more details, visit amazon.com/crownchannel. These exclusive offers and experiences build on Prime’s most exclusive member experience: the annual Prime Day event. This year, Prime Day returns July 12 and 13, offering members 48 hours of epic deals from Customers’ Most Loved, Internet Famous, small and medium-sized businesses, and a selection of Climate Pledge Friendly products, and many, many more. For more information on how to prep for the big day and to start shopping early deals, visit www.amazon.com/primeday. Not a Prime member yet? Join Prime or start a free 30-day trial at amazon.com/prime. Amazon also offers two discounted memberships so all qualifying customers can enjoy Prime. Qualifying recipients of government assistance, including EBT and Medicaid, are eligible to enjoy all of Prime’s benefits for just $6.99 per month—half the regular cost of a Prime membership. To learn more, visit www.amazon.com/qualifynow. Additionally, Prime Student membership is designed specifically for higher education students and costs just $7.49 per month or $69 per year. Prime Student members also enjoy exclusive perks for college life, like six months free of LinkedIn Premium and up to 10% off flights and hotels through StudentUniverse. College students who haven’t yet tried Prime Student can sign up for a six-month trial at www.amazon.com/joinstudent. Every Day Made Better with Prime Prime offers the best of shopping, savings, and entertainment to more than 200 million paid members around the world. In the U.S. that includes unlimited access to award-winning movies and series with Prime Video, ad-free listening of 2 million songs, thousands of stations and playlists, and thousands of podcasts with Amazon Music, free games with Prime Gaming, more than 3,000 books and magazines with Prime Reading, unlimited photo storage with Amazon Photos, and incredible savings with Prime Day. Prime was built on the foundation of unlimited fast, free shipping. Prime members enjoy ultrafast grocery delivery and pickup from Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market in more than 5,000 cities and towns, free Same-Day Delivery on hundreds of thousands of items in over 90 major metropolitan areas, and free One-Day Delivery on more than 20 million items coast to coast. Prime members also receive fast, free delivery on prescriptions from Amazon Pharmacy and prescription savings at more than 60,000 participating pharmacies in the U.S. To join Prime or start a 30-day free trial, visit amazon.com/prime.

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