Media Beat: December 22, 2017
A column about media and the regulatory environment within and beyond Canada's borders.
By David Farrell
It is the time of year when predictions of what's to come are flying fast and below are some of the more credible views espoused by specialists in the fields of media and technology. Of course, every year comes with its wild cards that spoil everyone's guesswork; but for now, a headline of ideas to consider when plotting your strategy going into 2018.
Good businesses keep up with the hottest trends. Great ones anticipate them. To help you discern what’s coming next, we’ve mined the forecasts, predictions, and projections from countless sources and polled Fortune’s in-house experts to bring you this look at the coming year. Our best bets? India will grow, cars will fly, and Bitcoin will crash—before it rebounds to new highs. Billionaires will blast off into space, and you’ll be eating meat with no animal in it (and you might even like it).
We are nearing peak in the attention economy. 2018 will be the year casualties start to mount, as audience attention becomes a scarce commodity. Smart players will tap into ‘kinetic capital’ – the value users give to experiences that involve their context and location – Mark Mulligan
There will be blood in the escalating battle amongst premium OTT video giants, as the market becomes over-saturated, early winners and losers are declared, and Netflix finds itself increasingly in everyone’s lines of sight — including Disney’s and Apple’s – TechCrunch
As more people and brands adopt Instagram Stories and Snapchat, these fleeting photos and videos become increasingly the default language in digital. 2018 may be the year that ‘traditional’ social media posts start to feel stiff and corporate - just another marketing channel - while disposable content is where brand personality is crafted and true love and engagement earned – eConsultancy
Toward the end of every year, I ask CEOs, CMOs, authors, executive recruiters and other experts from a variety of industries and backgrounds to weigh in on what will be hot for marketers in the upcoming year. From cybersecurity to AI to social media to impact in the boardroom, this year’s predictions do not disappoint. And to understand trends and predictions from around the globe, take a look at these 18 hot trends from leaders in China--from Tencent to McDonald's to Visa to WPP to Publicis to Google – Kimberly A. Whitler, Forbes
The technology, media and entertainment, and telecommunications ecosystem remains as fascinating as ever in 2018. Will augmented reality become mainstream? How will machine learning affect the enterprise? What's the future of the smartphone? Deloitte Global invites you to read the latest Predictions report, designed to provide insight into transformation and growth opportunities over the next one to five years.
“There will be experimentation with a Netflix model, where organizations start with what users want and then understand the economics of each area for journalism. Netflix has demonstrated very clearly that following users’ needs does not need to result in a drop in quality” – NiemanLab
Technology is moving at a rapid rate, changing our personal and professional lives, disrupting along the way. It’s never been more critical for everyone in business — whether you’re in radio, automotive, or into grocery stores to dial into these changes. There’s not a vertical that’s not being disrupted in some way – Fred Jacobs
The unboxing of voice-activated devices like Google Home and Amazon Alexa this Christmas will underpin an explosion in podcasting and, more broadly, audio-on-demand in 2018 – AdAge
If 2017 was the year that Hollywood was awakened to leverage podcast formats, then 2018 is the year that podcasts will benefit from the intellectual property exchange. Expect to see more blockbuster franchises like Wolverine diving into the podcast pool with a wave of scripted fiction, building hype in the lead-up to a film’s release. Equally, we’ll see TV drama subplot storylines released, interlinking with weekly airdates – M
When podcasting reaches its potential size, looking more like peak radio penetration thanks to these many new and improved sources of discovery, we’ll start to see several revenue models arise to support the diversity of content now possible by untethering the form from RSS – Caitlin Thompson, NiemenLab
Machine learning will intensify amongst medium and large-sized enterprises, doubling the number of implementations and pilot projects using machine learning technology in 2018 compared to last year, and then doubling again by 2020. According to Deloitte’s Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions, advancements in machine learning technology include data science automation and a reduced need for training data as well as new chips in both data centres and mobile devices. The advancements will help establish the foundation, which will over the near term make machine learning mainstream across industries where organizations have limited talent, infrastructure and data to train models.
Machine learning is an artificial intelligence (AI), or cognitive technology that enables systems to learn and improve from experience – by exposure to data – without being programmed explicitly. Deloitte predicts that by the end of 2018, more than 25 percent of all chips used to accelerate machine learning in a data centre will be field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) and application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs). These chips, in addition to graphics processing units chips (GPUs) that were the main choice in the past, will dramatically increase the use of machine learning, enabling applications to consume less power while being more responsive, flexible and capable.
“Over the coming year, machine learning will be more commonly used by businesses to improve existing technology and augment services for customers, but it’s not yet ubiquitous,” said Anders McKenzie, Managing Partner for Technology, Media & Telecommunications at Deloitte Canada. “This year is a tipping point where adoption of machine learning by enterprises is poised to accelerate and help businesses boost its operations by working faster and with more flexibility, rather than replace employees.”
Mobile only: wireless home broadband Internet
Deloitte predicts that 25 percent of Canadians with internet access will get all of their home data access from mobile cellular networks in 2018, compared to only 20 percent of Americans. By 2022, North Americans who obtain internet through wireless data at home could reach 30-40 percent, largely through new mmWave 5G wireless technologies. Younger Canadians, as well as those with lower incomes, are much more likely to rely on wireless only data at home.
“Varying broadband speeds and monthly caps on data, as well as location, will affect each individual’s mobile internet experience,” said Duncan Stewart, Director of Research at Deloitte Canada. “But those who are mobile-only are much more likely to be ‘sipping through a straw’ when it comes to internet access at home. As e-commerce amongst retailers grows, and online financial services firms and online education become more common, regulators will consider programs, initiatives and incentives that aim to provide better internet access to as much of the population as possible, with a focus on rural and lower-income households. Given Canada’s size and low population, the rural areas are likely to be a bigger challenge than in other countries.”
Adblocking: millennials most prone to “adlergic” reactions
Deloitte predicts that 10 percent of Americans will be “adlergic,” blocking more than four or more types of traditional and digital channels, but in Canada only six percent of adults do so. Canadian millennials 18-34 years old will be the most prone to adlergic behaviour with 11 percent being adlergic.
The popularity of subscription video on demand (SVOD), personal video recorders (PVRs) and adblocking software has enabled individuals to block ads more effectively, but low tech adblocking (such as changing the TV channel during commercial breaks) are also widely used. Higher education levels, employment and income also lead to stronger adlergic behaviour meaning that advertisers will focus on platforms that are more difficult to block and skip ads to reach severely adlergic target markets. – Deloitte Global Report