In a world of Over-The-Top (OTT) video, cable, and satellite, many have forgotten about local broadcast television, but there is one company who is trying to change that. Didja, a technology company dedicated to augmenting the television experience, is on a mission to bring local TV to OTT.
The company, which is based in Silicon Valley, has already launched two platforms — PhoenixBTV and BayAreaBTV — that bring local TV to digital devices. PhoenixBTV features 25 channels, including independent stations and specialty networks, while BayAreaBTV, which launched today, is home to more than 35 local channels (most of which are foreign language channels for bilingual households), with more to be added every month.
“We believe that antenna TV is fun, and that everyone deserves access to local programming and seamless technology at an affordable cost,” said Jim Long, CEO of Didja. “The most relevant programming to everyday Americans comes from live local broadcast TV stations, as they reflect the culture and diversity of their communities. In turn, we’re helping independent local broadcasters expand their reach into a wider market of households who haven’t been addressed before now. Eventually, we’ll also do the same for the big English-language networks, and both increase revenues while making local
Didja believes that the offering will be particularly appealing to millennials and other younger audiences that like to watch TV on mobile screens, as well as bilingual households in the region. The company plans to eventually expand its platform to cover 40 metro areas in the United States by 2020. Los Angeles is expected to be the next market to get the service.
“The Launch of LocalBTV is a great avenue for independent content creators and networks to expand their reach and engage new audiences. It also addresses an audience that is loyal consumer of broadcast stations that are over the air but can’t watch their favorite programming on the go via mobile,” said Eric Ratchman, EVP of Content Distribution for Univision. “We look forward to further exploring with LocalBTV how we can bring content to users’ fingertips.”
In addition to the ability to watch and channel surf live local TV from local stations broadcasting throughout the region, BayAreaBTV also comes with DVR capabilities and a channel guide so that viewers can see current and upcoming programming in one menu. The service is currently available for iOS and Android via the App Store and GooglePlay. Local channels partnering with BayAreaBTV at launch will be available to watch for free. Following a 30-day free trial, DVR capabilities are available to subscribers for $4.95 per month.