Wild times for OTT

Connected Planet (formerly Telephony) published an interview with Michael Greeson, founding partner of The Diffusion Group, last Friday, in which Greeson took aim at analyzing what had been a busy week for the over-the-top video segment. OTT definitely did grab headlines last week, with Wal-Mart announcing it would acquire VUDU, Cablevision announcing its PC-to-TV Relay service, Sezmi launching with Best Buy, and a report that Qwest Communications had invested in ZillionTV. (FierceOnlineVideo also just posted a column by Greeson looking at Sezmi in particular).

Interestingly, VUDU, Sezmi and ZillionTV all have hit bumps in the road in recent months as they have optimized their marketing approaches and channel partner strategies. Last week's news on all three should be cheering to anyone who feels OTT firms can play an important role feeding Internet content to traditional service providers.

The separate announcements also show that there is still more than one way (or two or three ways) to approach the evolution of OTT video, a segment that for now refuses to be tamed. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart's buy and Qwest's investment set up some interesting possibilities: Will retail giants and service providers battle over the acquisition of OTT content and distribution companies? Or, will servce providers continue to dabble with small investments and their own branded offerings (like Cablevision's), rather than try to figure out the market value of the latest OTT juggernaut?

For more:
- Connected Planet has this interview

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Wal-Mart last week said it would buy VUDU
Sezmi launched a pilot and raised money last year
Qwest reportedly invested in ZillionTV