digital television, movies, online, Philippines, television, video on demand, VOD service

iWhat?: iWant Encounters Loading Issues Upon Launch

The new iWant is off to a rather inauspicious start.

Hours into its highly anticipated launch last November 17, iWant encountered a temporary slowdown caused by high volume of users. Many of them downloaded the new iWant in order to watch some of its new and original content, which included the hotly-discussed film ‘Glorious’ featuring a viral kissing scene involving lead stars Angel Aquino and Tony Labrusca.

In response, iWant issued a statement saying that they are increasing capacity in order to meet the demands of its users. As of 10:00 p.m., the iWant app is now updated to version 4.0.2.

iWant also reported that the app now has over one million downloads and is used by over 10,000 users per hour. But with so many consumers knocking on the door, it was clear that ABS-CBN is not prepared for such high demand.

If the old iWant TV was smooth sailing to watch at times, then the same cannot be said to its successor. With some additional content such as the aforementioned original films and music to complement on-demand programs, films and live streams, ABS-CBN’s digital team found themselves in a conundrum over the possible increase in consumer demand.

Suffice to say, they failed to anticipate what took place next. And unfortunately for users of iWant (myself included), they took notice by bombarding iWant’s social media pages with plenty of complaints.

This is already the third day of iWant’s official operations and so far the ‘temporary slowdown’ that was revealed Saturday continues to linger. Even I began to question the capabilities of the new iWant, especially after my attempt to watch ANC’s live stream was constantly disrupted despite enjoying a strong internet connection.

Call it growing pains or simply impatience. For now, ABS-CBN’s digital team is working round the clock to improve and increase the capacity of iWant, but this is going to be a painful ordeal, so users must wait and see what happens in the next several days.

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digital television, entertainment, lifestyle, news, online, Philippines, television, video on demand, VOD service

At Last: GMA Enters Digital Territory with Online-Exclusive Shows

Better late than never.

After witnessing rivals ABS-CBN and TV5 establish their online presence with a slew of internet-exclusive programs the past few years, GMA finally decided to join in the fun by penetrating the digital world. The start of 2018 saw GMA launch three online-exclusive shows as part of its GMA ONE series.

They are:

Adulting 

Hosted by Atom Araullo, this program teaches young viewers some tips and advice in making adult life meaningful. It also takes a look at Atom’s daily life where he deals with the various trials and tribulations of being an adult.

#Goals

Hosted by Gabbi Garcia, this program tackles various fashion and lifestyle-related topics that young viewers can relate to. It will also look into Gabbi’s everyday life as she goes deep into her kikay kit and explore her personal goals, beliefs, desires and tastes.

Fact or Fake

Hosted by Joseph Morong, this program divulges deep into the news and determines whether or not it is factual or fictitious. Joseph’s role as a news reporter will come in handy as he sorts out which news is true and which is not.

The three online-exclusive shows were first streamed on the official GMA Network website and on GMA’s official YouTube channel last Monday. It will stream every Monday at 5:00 p.m. thereafter.

About the only thing missing from the launch of the three programs is GMA’s own online video-on-demand service similar to ABS-CBN’s iWant TV platform. Although the Kapuso network joined forces with YouTube to bring in full episodes of classic teleseryes from years past, it was still not enough to satisfy its need to create its own website/app that would house most, if not all of its programs both on TV and online.

Still, step one of perhaps an even bigger objective for GMA is worth a start. Now if they can start looking towards a bigger picture in order to be at par with what ABS-CBN is doing.

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online, television, video on demand, VOD service

In 100 Words: iWant TV Now Available to Smart, PLDT Subscribers

ABS-CBN’s iWant TV video on demand service continues to grow.

Just recently, the Lopez-owned media giant joined forces with Manny V. Pangilinan’s PLDT and Smart Communications for a game-changing agreement. Beginning in October, PLDT and Smart subscribers can now watch ABS-CBN shows anytime and anywhere through the iWant TV service.

Shows that air on ABS-CBN and its sister channels (e.g. S+A, ABS-CBN News Channel, DZMM TeleRadyo) are readily available on iWant TV. However, not all shows are free to watch, as some will still require an assigned fee to access.

Regardless, this is just another step in the right direction for ABS-CBN. As the network’s push for a more digital approach continues, one must wonder how will its competitors respond with this move.

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entertainment, internet, news, Philippines, public affairs, Sports, television, VOD service

Another Missing Element in GMA’s Repertoire

The lack of a video-on-demand and live streaming online service is another problem that GMA is facing today. (Photo credit: GMANetwork.com)

Online live streaming and video-on-demand services in the Philippines are becoming a useful tool for viewers who want to catch up on their favorite programs.

But while ABS-CBN and TV5 currently have their own VOD and live streaming websites, it is GMA’s lack of a similar website that leaves a lot to be desired.

At the start of the current decade, both ABS-CBN and TV5 took advantage of the internet in order to showcase their television programs. The Kapamilya network launched their iWantv! service starting in 2010, while the Kapatid network followed suit with their own catch-up TV service a few years later. TV5 also launched News5 Everywhere for their news programs.

This left GMA as the only major TV station without a licensed website dedicated to catch-up and live stream programming. As a result, Kapuso viewers were forced to go elsewhere.

Past episodes of GMA programs were uploaded daily on YouTube and other video websites, without any regard for copyright infringement. In addition, the presence of unlicensed live streaming websites made it easier for Kapuso viewers to access GMA programs online and in real time.

Much like the inconsistency and lack of ratings success in their programming, the apparent mismanagement of their contracted artists, the lack of a sports division, and the overt dependence on re-runs, budget concerns are dragging GMA down. And with the lack of any available funds to capitalize on new media, it is no secret why GMA has not been successful of late.

While the partial acquisition of Ramon Ang will help boost GMA’s fortunes, it remains to be seen if his magic touch will pay off. But right now, GMA is an entity with a lot of problems. And the lack of a VOD and live-streaming website is just another dilemma for the embattled network.

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