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Apr 18, 2017

Press

24i unveils cutting-edge CMS for VOD, SmartOTT Backstage

24i unveils cutting-edge CMS for VOD, SmartOTT Backstage   Amsterdam, The Netherlands, April 13th 201724i Media, a leading provider of multi-screen TV apps, today announced the launch of SmartOTT Backstage, a powerful Content Management system (CMS) designed to empower content owners, broadcasters and operators to unlock the potential of premium video with a service that allows them to enrich and organize their content metadata, offers social interaction, smarter personalized recommendations, continued viewing and superb curated content collections- instantly responsive across devices and regions. SmartOTT Backstage is a cloud-based and modular system that sits between the clients’ video backend system and their front- end applications, a robust and flexible solution comprised of three core functionalities, an intuitive CMS, a metadata & data-source component and a robust API which enrich and organizes content. Attached to flexible integration points, SmartOTT Backstage handles curated content collections, recommended feeds, scheduling, data-sourcing and metadata whilst providing customers with the opportunity to set up and brand their front-end apps by selection from a rich variety of layout elements and branding options. “We’re super excited to announce the launch of our leading-edge SmartOTT Backstage,” said Martijn Van Horssen, CEO at 24i Media. “We wanted to empower our customers to take full control over their content and curation, with a comprehensive toolbox to manage data for each piece of content, enabling them to meet the demands from their viewers for a personalized service. Our newly launched SmartOTT Backstage enables our customers to leverage the power of metadata and third-party integrations to create a more personalized experience across all devices.” SmartOTT Backstage enables customers to take complete control of their product and content experience, including key features such as:

Seamless integrations; The solution further offers a comprehensive suite of connectors that integrate seamlessly with existing systems and partners, allowing customers to enable/disable a range of integrations. For example analytics (Adobe Analytics, Google Analytics) or advertisement (FreeWheel, Google DFP), recommendation, etc.

Powerful and robust API: The flexible API is designed as an independent component, which is integrated with the SmartOTT Backstage Metadata/Data-source component. It can also connect to any source containing metadata, app configurations, etc.

An optimized unified point of access for all applications to retrieve app configurations, metadata and additional services not provided by the OVP, such as recommendations powered by Microsoft Azure.

Metadata enrichment system; a tool to import the metadata from the OVP into the system allowing clients to improve and differentiate their content data

Data-source and import/export tool for all application related configurations, including but not limited to; Template, Menu, Pages, Sections, Playlists, third party integration configurations.

Personalization – combining user preferences and rich metadata for customized content recommendations.

Content and metadata orchestration; a query builder & collection editor allowing customers to create curated playlists, meaningful content collections and schedule publishing- for smarter planning and scheduling of content workflows.

App configuration tool; allowing clients to select the modules & content they want to show on each page of their front-end apps, on any device.

Intuitive branding tool; enabling customers to incorporate their brand & look across all their apps, on any device, from uploading their logo to posting a promotional message.

Advanced user & role management; offering possibilities to customize the roles within an application with granular permissions.

Easily create application pages through a defined set of page blueprints (browse, search, settings), gives customers the freedom to arrange, schedule, order and publish their content as they wish.

The SmartOTT Backstage will be demoed at the 2017 NAB Show (Booth #SU11702CM), April 24 – 27, 2017, in Las Vegas. To learn more about the SmartOTT Backstage or to schedule a meeting with a 24i Media representative at the NAB Show, please visit: http://www.24i.com/meet-us-nab-2017/ About 24i Media (www.24i.com) 24i is a leading vendor in Smart TV apps for all devices including mobile, Smart TV, Set-top-boxes, Pc/ Mac , game consoles etc., empowering broadcasters, content owners and operators with future-proof and flexible tools to create and monetize personalized TV apps, while accelerating time-to-market and reducing cost. 24i’s technology framework powers the digital experience for leading brands around the world, including RTL, Fox Sports, Viacom Media Networks, Sinclair Broadcasting Group, Televisa, Fuse Media and many more, delivering state-of-the-art OTT apps, designed to maximize ROI, create seamless consumer experiences and build personalized engagements across all platforms. 24i Media is headquartered in Amsterdam, with offices in Los Angeles, Buenos Aires, Copenhagen, Madrid and Brno. For more information, please visit www.24i.com.
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Jul 14, 2017

Blog

U.S. cord cutters watch more Netflix than Amazon Video, Hulu and YouTube combined

Netflix is continuing to dominate streaming services in the U.S., not only in terms of penetration in cord cutters’ homes, as reported in April, but also in time spent watching. According to data from comScore, cord cutters are watching more Netflix each month than YouTube, Hulu and Amazon Video combined. But Hulu users are more engaged with the service on a daily basis, the study indicates. The data from comScore was cited by MarketingCharts in its own report released this morning, and follows on earlier findings that the user base for subscription video services has now topped the cable TV audience, indicating a shift in how people in the U.S. are today watching television. Netflix in April accounted for 40 percent of over-the-top viewing hours, compared with 18 percent for YouTube, 14 percent for Hulu, and 7 percent for Amazon Video. It also has the most monthly viewing days per household at 12.3 days. But when you look at viewing behavior on a day-by-day basis, Hulu is far ahead of the pack. On average, U.S. cord cutters are watching 2.9 hours of Hulu per day, which is ahead of Netflix (2.2 hours), YouTube (2.1 hours), and Amazon Video (2 hours). Though MarketingCharts’ report didn’t delve deeply into why that’s the case, the primary reason is simply due to the fact that Netflix has higher penetration in the U.S. However, the new figures may point to key differences in how consumers watch the different streaming services, too. Netflix, for example, likely encourages more binge watching sessions, because of how it drops entire seasons of shows at once – like the recent release of Season 5 of “Orange is the New Black,” where a single event – a prison riot – is told across 13 episodes. The entire season feels like one, long story, not a dozen or so separate ones. Meanwhile, Hulu’s partnerships enable streaming access to network and cable TV programming, which in turn has people tuning into its service on a more regular basis to see if new episodes of their favorite shows are available. Or, in other words, Hulu is taking the place of traditional TV in the cord-cutting era, while Netflix has become associated with an entirely different style of viewing. In fact, Netflix has been credited with the invention of this new storytelling “art form” – something that sits in between being a TV show but isn’t quite a film, either. Storytellers have adapted their content to cater to binge watchers, too, by telling these longer stories, and sometimes even crafting entire first seasons that function as the “pilot,” instead of just the first episode. Plus, these TV stories don’t have to rely as much on things like manipulative cliff-hangers – a holdover from the network TV era where shows needed a hook to pull people back next week. Now, storytellers can instead count more on Netflix’s auto-play feature, which loads up the next episode immediately after the current one ends. On Netflix, it takes more effort to stop watching than to keep bingeing. The new data doesn’t definitively prove that these factors have contributed to why Netflix is capturing more viewing hours, but they likely play a role. Source: Techcrunch
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Jul 11, 2017

News

24i is nominated for the Streaming Media Readers’ Choice Awards 2017

We’re delighted to have been nominated for the best multiscreen solution in the 2017 Streaming Media Europe Readers Choice Award. The award is an annual industry competition hosted by Streaming Media Magazine, which lets readers choose their favourite streaming technology. 24i and our turnkey, world class TV app solution, SmartOTT, has been nominated in the category for best Multiscreen solution. A category covering Over-the-top and "catch-up" solutions for delivering television content online to multiple devices, including set-top boxes, smart TVs, mobile phones, tablets, and more. Cast your vote here today!
24i’s front-end solution for Over-The-Top TV distributors is an off-the-shelf, customizable template product that enables customers to remove complexity from their IPTV and OTT strategy. It’s a cohesive suite that enables you to simplify syndication and deliver your live and on-demand TV and video content, from one to hundreds of TV channels, to any screen. With this cost -efficient, turn-key solution operators can quickly expand their reach among the next generation of TV viewers, worldwide. This nimble and ever-evolving product offers a best-in-class user experience that drives engagement, turning viewers into fans and increases revenue.
Powerful and flexible, SmartOTT, is a turnkey TV app solution for all devices, empowering leading operators, broadcasters, media companies and content owners across the world to seamlessly create, manage, distribute and monetize their premium content across all networks and devices. Powered by 24i’s proven AppCore production framework, the template-based SmartOTT solution ensures fast time-to-market and proven UI & UX. Learn more about SmartOTT!    Your vote is highly appreciated! We’re naturally pretty pleased with being nominated for this prestigious award. Your vote would be highly appreciated. Voting closes on August 1st so cast your vote today! 
We’re also delighted to see that so many of our awesome partners are amongst the nominees. Congrats – you’ve got our vote! Thank you! We appreciate your support!
Cast your vote here today! 
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Jul 10, 2017

Blog

European OTT / VOD Providers Leverage Population Diversity and Changing Subscriber Preferences to Expand Installed Base

There is a high level of activity in the European over-the-top (OTT) / Video-on-Demand (VOD) services market in terms of financial investments, new features, and service launches. The fragmented ecosystem, with over 450+ unique video on demand service providers in the region, is transforming as partnerships between various stakeholders in the value chain increase to capture market share. About EUR150 million was invested in 2016 in content and technology firms to drive expansion of connected video services. However, intense competition, price sensitivity among consumers, regulatory uncertainty due to Brexit policies, and the digital single market strategy of the European commission, are some of the challenges that could restrain the growth of the market in the near term. Content personalization and customization strategies are crucial for growth, finds Frost & Sullivan's Digital Transformation team "Various events in the media industry in 2016 and early 2017 reflect that the OTT video industry in Europe is undergoing major transformation," states Frost & Sullivan Digital Transformation Analysts Vidya S Nath and Swetha R K. "Despite being a highly fragmented market, there have been several new launches with innovative features and services." "Despite intense competition, a fragmented structure and regulatory pressure, the diversity of the population and changing subscriber preferences ensures that there is still space for everyone," notes Swetha R K. "Strong content strategy and technological innovation will be the key to differentiation." Key factors fuelling growth in the European OTT market include: • OTT/ VOD services being offered by the entire ecosystem of media companies including, Pay TV providers, broadcast  networks, OTT portals, and social media companies • Expanding Internet penetration levels and demand for travel-friendly options to watch TV that promote online multimedia consumption; • Innovation in the form of several advanced value-added features and novel business models; • Diverse international and local content and attractive bundling offers from TV providers that fuel OTT service adoption among a tech-savvy population; • Low penetration in Central and Eastern Europe, where demand for local content is booming; and • Need for an assortment of service providers for different requirements of an OTT video operator, including compression, streaming, real-time video analytics, user experience, and payment options. "While the next 12 months hold a promising market outlook for OTT growth, the key to survival and sustenance of growth will depend on how various service providers are able to drive personalization and customization while differentiating their service value proposition, " reveals Nath. Nordic TV Summit – exploring Content personalization and customization strategies According to the new research from Frost & Sullivan, content personalization and customization strategies are crucial for growth. At the annual Nordic TV Summit in Copenhagen, Sept. 28th, we’ll talk more about the need for content personalization and customization strategies, get insight from industry pioneers, share best practice and much more. Visit www.nordictvsummit.com for more details about this must attend event. Source: Newswire
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Jun 29, 2017

Blog

Smart TVs to drive internet-connected TV growth

By the end of 2020 there are forecast to be 260 million installed devices attached to the Internet and able to deliver apps to TVs, according to the latest NPD Connected Intelligence forecast. This represents 31% growth in TV-connected devices over the forecast period, led by smart TVs and streaming media players. In fact, smart TVs will drive nearly half (48%) of installed Internet-connected TV device growth through 2020, while streaming media players will contribute 31 percent of ownership growth. The TV-Connected Device Forecast looks to shed light on how new generation smart TVs and evolved streaming media boxes and sticks will shape home entertainment. According to the forecast, by 2018, and through the end of the forecast period, household penetration of smart TVs will achieve relative parity with streaming media players as platforms delivering apps to TVs. “Sales of smart TVs and continued growth in streaming video will contribute to the increase of installed internet-connected TVs,” said John Buffone, executive director, industry analyst, NPD Connected Intelligence. “Additionally, 4K mass market adoption plays an important role, as nearly all 4K TVs are internet capable.” The rate of attaching connectable-TV devices to the internet is projected to increase from 73% in 2016 to 81% of installed units by 2020. This will eventually lead consumers to choose a preferred device and result in a diminished use of other devices. From January 2013 through January 2017, usage of installed internet capable TVs to access online content increased from 30 to 55%, demonstrating growing consumer interest in streaming video. As such, streaming media player original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), including Google, Roku and Amazon, continue to partner with TV OEMs to integrate their operating systems directly into displays. “All trends point to smart TVs and streaming media players driving the majority of growth in TV-connected devices. When you compound the increased usage for streaming video, it points to further dominance of these platforms, as they provide the premium content and ease of use consumers demand,” noted Buffone. Source: BroadbandTV News 
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