COMCAST announced the loss of 65,000 basic-cable subscribers in the third quarter, which follows a loss of 95,000 subscribers in the previous quarter. The company is also seeing severely reduced growth in high-speed Internet subscribers. Comcast blames the customer erosion on increased competition from satellite and telephone companies.
THE NBA is in talks with Turner Sports to form a partnership to run the league’s NBA TV and digital assets. Commissioner David Stern expects “significant growth” in digital revenues over the next several years and stressed the strength of the league’s multi-platform opportunities, which include NBA wireless, NBA.com, and an NBA video on demand service. However Stern said the league will not offer online-only access to live games out of fear that it will cannibalize its TV business. Online viewing will remain limited to subscribers of the NBA “League Pass” TV package.
PUBLICIS GROUPE has launched Honeyshed.com, a new video hub dedicated to promoting consumer brands. The videos are all made specifically for the site and will offer both pre-recorded spots and live programming. Users will be able to chat and embed videos on their sites. Honeyshed is currently in limited beta form with a full launch expected in December.
APPLE is reportedly receiving $18 per month from AT&T for each iPhone subscriber. An analyst for Piper Jaffray crunched the numbers using official Apple filings, and settled on a figure that doubles the value of the phone for Apple — from a $399 selling price to $831 over two years. Last week, the company decided to limit sales of the fast-selling smartphone to discourage buyers from reselling them. The company will now only sell two iPhones per customer and not allow cash transactions.
THE WRITERS GUILD contract with TV producers and studios expires this Wednesday October 31 and the union has already authorized a strike. The two sides disagree on the appropriate compensation for new media and DVD sales. If no new agreement is reached shows may be forced into re-runs. This week’s podcast features WGA/East President Michael Winship, who offers a behind-the-scenes look into the negotiations.