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Nov 14th 2013

AOL On to Power Roku's Home News Channel

Where do you go to get the latest news? When you need to know what's happening in the world today, do you pick up a newspaper, turn on the TV, check a website, or see what's trending on social media? No matter which one is your preferred modus operandi, you've likely chosen it for two reasons: 1) it's convenient, and 2) it's a source that you trust.
As our news consumption habits evolve with the times, AOL is proud to provide today's connected consumers with yet another option that meets both of these criteria. Beginning today, Roku's home screen will feature a stream of continuously refreshed news videos powered by AOL On. With hundreds of videos from our partners – The Associated Press, BBC, CNET, E!, ET, Engadget, HuffPost Live, Reuters, and The Wall Street Journal, to name a few – Roku users will now be able to access news from the most trusted sources in the industry simply by turning on their device.

AOL On's library of 700,000 curated videos and original series is still available through the Roku Channel Store. But now, with the addition of the "News Channel on Roku powered by AOL On", users will also have instant, on-demand access to a dedicated news channel directly on their home screen for the very first time.
We're proud to partner with Roku on the launch of our news channel. But most importantly, we're excited to provide viewers with a convenient way to watch the news they need from the sources they respect the most.

Oct 17th 2013

AOL breaks U.S. video industry records, tops comScore rankings in September

In just one month since we completed the acquisition of Adap.tv, we're proud to announce that both parties are already reaping the benefits.

Earlier today, comScore released the U.S. Online Video Rankings for September; AOL not only tops the list of online video ad properties for the month, but also served up 3.7 billion (yes, that's with a "b") video ads -- the largest number by a single property ever recorded by comScore*.

This is the first public data combining both Adap.tv and AOL as one unit, and these results reaffirm the significance of the acquisition and speak to the bright future that lies ahead in video. Specifically, Adap.tv is uniquely positioned to accelerate programmatic ad buying across a bevy of premium publishers and brand advertisers -- and indeed, it already has.

We recently highlighted our leadership position in programmatic at our first-ever Programmatic Upfront, where five of the top six media holding companies committed to programmatic ad packages with AOL in 2014. Adap.tv was also named by IPG's MAGNA GLOBAL unit as its preferred video technology platform, accelerating the agency's client successes across digital, mobile and linear television. The belief is that by eliminating the many points of friction and manual processes within advertising transactions, we can explode creativity and spotlight the incredible work being done in video advertising.

We've also consistently maintained our ranking as one of the top three premium video content properties on the Web by making good on our promise to utilize a syndication model that makes the economics of video production work for publishers and content creators. To that end, we've recently announced partnerships with content brands like ESPN, Discovery and The Wall Street Journal, and we've launched immensely popular series that have raked in a combined 23M** views to date.

We're pleased to see tangible results, and we're inspired by the speed at which we've grown our video offerings to be one of the best in the business. We are currently seeing a 32% increase in video views year-over-year, compared to 17% growth for the overall industry***, with all signs pointing to strong continued success for video at AOL.

From investing in video advertising to syndicating short-form premium content to launching original programs with well-known talent, we have built a complete solution that brings together both content and technology, arming every edge of the ecosystem with what is needed for the next generation of video.

With that said, this milestone could not have been reached without the work of our brilliant employees and our visionary partners and clients who understand the power of sight, sound and motion in today's media and tech economy.

Thank you -- we are excited to be on this journey with you and look forward to continuing this momentum in 2014.

*comScore, September 2013 U.S. Online Video Rankings, Video Ad Properties Ranked by Video Ad Views
**AOL internal analytics, September 2013

***comScore, Video Metrix Media Trend, September 2012 to September 2013, Video Properties

Sep 6th 2013

AOL and Minteye Partner to Create New Video Ad Unit

At AOL, we're big believers in the power of video advertising – just look at our recent acquisition of Adap.tv, our focus on original programming, and the launch of our Programmatic Upfronts. We're also committed to partnering with outside companies who are creating the most cutting-edge technology to help video advertisers stay one step ahead of consumer behavior.

On the heels of our recent partnership with video enrichment platform Carambola, we're proud to announce that we've teamed up with minteye to create a powerful new ad unit based on the technology that powers minteye's Pre-Roll SKIP ad product.

We're even prouder to share that we're the first to adopt their technology.

With the unit, we're able to reduce click-aways and ensure that users stay engaged. By offering users the choice to skip the ad, it gives them control over their ad experience – via minteye's slide-bar technology – creating a game-like interaction.

So, how does it work?
While the user slides the bar to skip the pre-roll, an ad visual that's been broken down into tiles appears over the pre-roll. As the user continues to slide the bar, the tiles become a normal image, which is resized to fit the frame. Once the user has normalized the image, the "skip" button becomes active and the user can proceed directly to the content. This also drives higher awareness for advertisers than if the user had watched the entire pre-roll.

We think it's a win-win for everyone: Consumers get to the content they want faster, and advertisers get guaranteed engagement while supporting a better user experience.

Try the unit out for yourself here.
For updates and the latest news from AOL, follow @AOLPR on Twitter.

Jan 7th 2013

AOL On and Vuguru Debut All-New Comedy Series 'Playdate'

Following the success of Little Women, Big Cars, Fetching and Greetings From Home, AOL On and Vuguru are bringing you another original comedy series called Playdate. Set in suburban America, Playdate stars Amy (Stephanie Lemelin), a seemingly perfect stay-at-home mom, and Grace (Alicia Witt), the bohemian, eccentric, and new, next-door neighbor. The two soon become best friends; even their daughters are inseparable.

Playdate takes an unexpected twist when Grace turns on Amy, causing her new "best friend" to lose her grip on the parental balancing act where she finds herself at the center of the other mommy's scorn and ridicule. As more and more of her life begin to crumble around her, Amy starts to suspect Grace is behind her downfall. But is Grace really to blame or is Amy the one with the real problem?

Tune in to find out - the series debuts today! Watch the trailer below and check out new episodes each week on AOL On Parenting.

Oct 4th 2012

The AOL On Network - We're Pretty Much Everywhere


In August The AOL On Network launched version 2.0 of its connected TV app and expanded the app onto three new platforms, making our massive video library available for 10 total connected TV devices. Today, we've announced that a native app is being launched for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets to continue our goal of reaching consumers at every touch point. With the announcement, The AOL On Network's 420,000 short-form videos can now reach over 85 percent all of U.S. consumers. We're everywhere now -- on your desktops, smartphones, tablets and connected TVs.

This announcement further showcases AOL's commitment to video and providing viewers with the top content they need to see at the right time. And, the most recent comScore Video Metrix Report indicates that this strategy is resonating with audiences as we climbed up to more than 61 million viewers and again surpassed the 1B marker for total streams of both video ads and content. Since we're now on more mobile devices, including the iPhone, iPad and Android-powered devices from manufacturers like Samsung and HTC, we expect to see our reach continue to climb.

Our viewers will be glad to know that the mobile apps were built with their user experience in mind. Users can search for and "favorite" videos with just one touch as well as share with their social networks. The iOS version is also Airplay enabled, allowing users who have Apple TV to seamlessly display videos from a mobile iOS device onto the television.

And while today's news is great for consumers, it's important to note that this is also a big deal for our content partners and advertisers. They'll benefit not only by taking advantage of the increased exposure, but also because media buyers can now purchase across all of AOL's properties, like Engadget, TechCrunch and HuffPost Live, with just one buy and gain access to all devices.

Lastly, I just want to give a big acknowledgement to Rob Delacruz, our General Manager for Connected TV and Mobile Video, and his entire team for their outstanding work on developing these apps. Rob is just one of many staffers we have at The AOL On Network who works tirelessly everyday to make AOL On the best destination for video!

Check out the AOL On app now by heading to Apple's App store or the Google Play App store.

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