YouTube reportedly is in discussions with content providers to launch a series of subscription-based video channels in a bid to take on cable providers and streaming services such as Netflix. The Google-owned video platform would charge $1 to $5 a month for access to the programming, which could be available by the second quarter, according to sources.
Apple will launch an iPad with double the maximum storage of the latest version, the company says. The 128-gigabyte iPad will go on sale next week, priced at $799 for the Wi-Fi-only model and $929 for the cellular-enabled model.
Netflix says it plans to refinance debt and offer up to $200 million in new notes to raise cash for the production of original content. Netflix executives made the announcement in a conference call with investors and in a shareholder note that mentioned the rising cost of licensing and producing digital content. "This would give us additional reserves as well as increased flexibility to fund future originals," CEO Reed Hastings wrote in the note.
Amazon's media sales increased 13% in the fourth quarter compared with Q4 of 2011, exceeding $2.9 billion, Chief Financial Officer Tom Szkutak says. Meanwhile, streaming of free video by Amazon Prime members has risen "dramatically," along with Prime membership, Szkutak says.
Creating compelling video content for online distribution means moving away from the linear thinking of traditional broadcasting and using the innate capabilities of the Internet to engage audiences, the founders of online-video publication Tubefilter say. Drew Baldwin and Josh Cohen say this involves leveraging social media for marketing and tapping into the "natural interactivity of the Internet" to engage in "a different kind of storytelling."