At last weeks NextTV Series on CEE & DACH in Berlin, M7 Group VP Business Development Bill Wijdeveld told the audience on the progress the European pay-TV provider is making with the roll-out of its hybrid DTH/OTT viewing proposition.
Following a relaunch of the TV Everywhere platform in May this year in the context of the Find Wonder campaign, Wijdeveld stated that M7 Group has tripled the amount of users of its TV Everywhere App and web portal to currently over 200,000.
Wijdeveld: “This rapid increase is mostly due to the enhancement of Restart and Replay services, the high quality of the streams and a brand-new user interface for Apps and Web, available to all subscribers of our various pay-TV platforms in Europe.”
Furthermore, M7 Group has around 150,000 hybrid boxes deployed among its customers.
“The hybrid boxes and the TV Everywhere Apps are seamlessly working together, allowing people to continue watching programs when switching from mobile device towards the big screen and vice versa, both for linear and non-linear viewing,” according to Wijdeveld.
Apart from Restart, Replay/catch-up and nPVR, M7 also provides a VOD platform including SVOD, TVOD and a Free VoD offering of hundreds of arthouse films. According to Wijdeveld the take-up of non-linear viewing among M7 subscribers is impressive, especially for Skylink. “Among Skylink subscribers, the percentage of non-linear viewing among TV Everywhere users via App and Web portal reaches on some days the level of 30%.”
M7 Group now serves over three million viewers via its pay TV platforms in various European countries: CanalDigitaal and Online.nl in the Netherlands, TV Vlaanderen in Flanders and TéléSAT in French speaking Belgium, HD Austria in Austria, Skylink for the Czech and Slovak markets and M7 Deutschland in Germany.
Coming from a DTH-background, the hybrid route is for M7 the way forward. Wijdeveld: “We still see a solid future for linear television via DTH and IPTV. However, the addition of interactive, non-linear services is absolutely key to remain competitive in a rapidly changing media landscape where viewers increasingly ask for multiscreen and time-shifted viewing options. The fast take-up of TV Everywhere and the growing amount of non-linear viewing among our subscribers just proofs we are on the right track.”
In a related development, Dutch Canal Digitaal has added all RTL channels to its TV Gemist advanced services.
Viewers can catch up till seven days ago on all Dutch RTL channels (RTL 4, RTL 5, RTL 7, RTL 8 HD, RTL Z, RTL Crime, RTL Telekids and RTL Lounge), the can also re-start any programme (Begin Gemist) with the TV App, with Live TV via the website and the Canal Digitaal hybrid receivers.