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January 28, 2016

ITEM: One week after Indonesia’s tech ministry put Netflix on notice – giving it one month to comply with local film and broadcast regulations – state-owned incumbent carrier Telkom has blocked Netflix completely for non-compliance and, allegedly, porn.

According to Tech In Asia (citing a report from local media IndoTelko), the block kicked in at midnight Wednesday (January 27), after which users of Telkom and any related service – including IndiHome,, and mobile arm Telkomsel – were unable to access Netflix.

Telkom’s director of consumer service, Dian Rachmawan,... MORE

January 15, 2016

When Netflix announced it would open its OTT video service in 130 more countries, one of the big questions among interested subscribers was: just how much of their content library will I be able to access?

The official answer: it depends on where you live, as not all Netflix content is licensed for global distribution. The unofficial answer: all of it, if you use VPNs or “unblocker” apps that fool Netflix’s servers into thinking you're logging in from a device physically located in the US. 

Many subscribers have been doing this for years. While Netflix’s terms of service... MORE

January 11, 2016

ITEM: Your smart TV may be vulnerable to malware – if it’s running on an older version of Android.

Smart TVs that use the Android OS can use apps to watch streaming TV channels. But according to Trend Micro, some of these apps contain a backdoor that abuses an old flaw in Android versions before Lollipop 5.0 (basically anything between Cupcake 1.5 and Kitkat 4.4W.2).  

Trend Micro has provided a list of URLs that are distributing the malware apps under the name “H.TV”.

Here’s how the attack works [from the Trend Micro blog]:

First, the attackers lure owners... MORE

January 08, 2016

One of the biggest announcements at this year’s CES – apart from all the virtual reality gubbins – was Netflix’s launch of a new global player that effectively makes the service available in every country on Earth except China, North Korea, Syria, and Crimea. (Netflix is working on China separately to deal with regulatory issues. It’s currently illegal under US law for US-based companies to do business with the other three.)

From the press release:

“Today you are witnessing the birth of a new global Internet TV network,” said [Netflix co-founder and CEO Reed] Hastings. “... MORE

December 01, 2015

ITEM: Two of Asia-Pacific’s rising stars in the OTT video scene took the stage at Capacity Asia 2015 in Bangkok Tuesday – partly to showcase their exclusive content libraries, and partly to assure telcos that they are partners, not competitors.

Azran Osman-Rani, CEO of iflix Malaysia and chief operating officer of the iflix Group, spent a lot of time talking about iflix’s content strategy (namely, stockpiling as much exclusive, original and premium content as possible from the region as well as the US). But he also emphasized that partnerships with telcos is a key element of the... MORE

October 07, 2015

ITEM: Okay, it wasn’t exactly a rebuttal to anti-OTT statements, but Twitter’s Arvinder Gujral used his keynote speech at LTE Asia 2015 on Wednesday to make an energetic case for telcos to partner with OTT players – or at least with OTT players like Twitter.

Indeed, Gujral – Twitter’s APAC director for business development – sought to distance Twitter from other OTT players, and established his telco-friendly credentials by pointing out that (1) telco assets are “highly underappreciated” in the traditional OTT space, and (2) Gujral used to work for Aircel, “so I understand the pain... MORE

October 07, 2015

As the telecom industry plunges headlong into the era of digital services, one of the perennial questions facing mobile operators struggling to transform themselves into digital players is how they should respond to the OTT players who are driving that transformation.

The advice from Korea’s LG U+: shut ‘em out.

“Someone said earlier that the cloud generation will flourish soon,” Changkul Jo, VP of the technology development center of LG U+, said during a panel on new operator business models at LTE Asia Tuesday. “Maybe this is personal, but if the commercial P2P world... MORE

October 02, 2015

ITEM [via Bloomberg]: has notified its marketplace sellers that it will stop selling Apple TV and Google’s Chromecast. No new listings for either of them will be allowed, and posting of existing inventory will be removed on October 29.

The official reason: Apple and Google’s media streaming devices do not "interact well" with Amazon’s Prime Video.

Amazon will continue to sell Xbox, PlayStation and Roku devices because they support Prime Video. Amazon said in the email that it will stop selling incompatible media players “in order to avoid customer confusion.”... MORE