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Thread: Flow Seek to block Streaming Services

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    Default Flow Seek to block Streaming Services

    In an interview with The Jamaica Observer Flow's managing director reiterate the company's opposition to net neutrality and clearly stating their intention to block streaming services (eg Netflix, Amazon etc) on its network.
    Like Digicel, the company is not a supporter of the idea of net neutrality, or devices which allow users to watch cable TV for free. The Amazon Fire stick and similar devices “don't pay for broadcasting rights here,” Price noted. “All are illegal and unlicensed in this territory. We will look to see how we can restrict that traffic.”

    Source: Jamaica Observer

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    He is actually right in a sense.

    For example Amazon video does not have broadcast rights to many of its programming in this region and when you attempt to play them it gives you a geographic restriction. So Amazon is actually following the broadcasting rules. Netflix (US) will also do the same however the Caribbean is properly licensed.

    Using the Fire Stick example he was probably making reference to Kodi being sideloaded and some free stream off the internet. That is of course is not licensed but if they take the route of blocking specific data traffic that is not going to bode well for their customers as it is basically impossible to police the internet.

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    I do not see why I shouldn't have access to other content outside my region.
    Its like forcing us to watch whatever they want us to and most of those stuff are in Spanish.

    I want to watch a TV show, if its not available in my area I can't watch it.
    If it only shows at a certain time, I have to wait til its being showed.
    That's just garage.

    I want to watch whatever I want when I want from wherever I want.

    Cable TV is dying industry.
    If they block a particular stream of traffic, I'm sure there will be many more that will rise up and VPN is always an option.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkAngel View Post
    In an interview with The Jamaica Observer Flow's managing director reiterate the company's opposition to net neutrality and clearly stating their intention to block streaming services (eg Netflix, Amazon etc) on its network.

    Source: Jamaica Observer
    While I strongly disagree with the act of blocking streaming services. The evidence and arguments provided by Flow is understandable, and true. The issue is that consumers taste for movies and shows are changing. More and more people are on the go, so gone are the days. When people have to stick in front of a TV at home, and watch whatever content is being provided.

    People want to watch, what they want. And when they want to, Flows content is tamed and lacks much variety. Also the Spanish speaking content needs to be addressed, I understand that Jamaica and the English speaking Caribbean is way too small for content providers to make enough revenue to justify access to English (US) content. But there must be something that Liberty Global can do, for the consumers in the English Speaking Caribbean.

    I would also recommend that Flow allows streaming on the go for its cable subscribers, and develop a app. With license content, so users can choose what they want to watch, and pay for this via their cable subscription. I remember reading sometime back, that liberty Global was negotiating with Netflix, to have the streaming giant offer its services on Liberty Globals cable platforms. For users, such as Flow customers to subscribe to, if so desired. If these negotiations are still ongoing, then Flow if given the authorization. Should allow its cable subscribers to stream Netflix overs its Mobile Network, once the user is subscribed to the service via their Monthly Flow bill.

    Flow needs to innovate, and realize that traditional Cable TV is dying rapidly. The future of TV is on demand and on the go streaming. The Internet is impossible to police or regulate.
    Last edited by Nathan77791; Aug 18, 2017 at 11:12 AM.

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    The Flow to go app does what you described...

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    Quote Originally Posted by GPRS Internet View Post
    The Flow to go app does what you described...
    Yes I know that, but it lacks variety and it still shows the Spanish content that is currently offered by Flow. I am talking about an app that has only movies, TV shows and documentaries. That is one of the reason why Liberty Global entered into talks with Netflix, so that they can provide their subscribers with a variety of legal streaming options of movies and TV shows. Currently, We don't know where or how advance these discussions are.

    But what I do know, is that Liberty Global realizes the fast changing habits of consumers, and the content they want to watch, and how they want to watch it. On the other hand, Flow needs to allow streaming via its Mobile Network for the Flow to Go app, This is 2017 and Jamaicans cant even stream a video over both Mobile providers Networks. Because the data plans sizes don't accommodate such features. This must change, I really hope that with the roll out of Flows LTE Network, and the expansion of Digicels LTE Network.

    That both Providers will allow streaming of content via their Mobile Network. I mean that is the reason for the Flow to go app, so why not allow it over the Mobile network. With new and revamp data plans catering to such features.

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    The majority of the big telcom companies are themselves ISPs and cable tv service providers, We know the traditional telephone services and cable tv subscription service are rapidly dying. They can argue all they want about having proper license, or whatever else, we know ultimately this is all about the telcom companies protecting the status quo and their revenue streams. Data is where its at now, and their competitors can use it to offer these services globally at a fraction of the cost and big telecom cant deal with it.

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    It's a big step back in my opinion and quite frankly, C&WJ has more work to do in terms of the content & the QUALITY of service they provide before they can think of blocking content from whichever platform. Firstly, we need to remember that Liberty Global has a partnership with Netflix which we will soon be feeling the effects of sometime in 2018. Secondly, Loberty Global has been a huge proponent of forging partnerships with OTTs and I suppose he (the MD/CEO) will have to succumb to working with OTTs other than blocking them. Such is a slippery slop and can possibly erode their own revenue streams... especially when they offer OTA streaming through the FLOW To Go app, which can be accessed on Digicel's or FLOW's data networks.

    I so wish we'd had the genius of other MDs like Bill McCabe from FLOW Cayman for example, who spearheaded a vast swath of customer centric initatives like self-serve help platforms (like Zendesk) and rigourous adherence to transparency, brand image as well as an understanding for needing to push the market forward (something we're seeing in Digicel's 2030 vision). While I appreciate local talent, It befuddles me as to why FLOW's largest market is far behind in most of the company's offerings, most notably in broadband whereas markets served by talent who've had experience from working with other operators like Vodafone, AT&T, BT and the like are FAR ahead in other respects. Quite frankly, there is no time for big chat and puffing chest over OTTs when your competiton is ready to eviscerate your second largest revenue stream. Now's a critical juncture for the company to really sure up its core competencies and flex its muscle (i.e. scale and assets) to really assert its place in Jamaican telecoms for the next 10 or so years.

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    You are very right about quality of service. Every other Thursday to Monday for the last 3 months I'm out of internet service and find it ridiculous that I have to call in which takes up to 30mins to get rebated each time. If my internet connection is down I have to find out by not being able to connect to remote to my devices. They should provide some update especially for scheduled work.

    Compensating me with money doesn't solve anything, I paid for the service for a reason. They need to improve on their network and customer relation.

    If there was another provider in Old Harbour, I would leave long ago.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandysull View Post
    It's a big step back in my opinion and quite frankly, C&WJ has more work to do in terms of the content & the QUALITY of service they provide before they can think of blocking content from whichever platform. Firstly, we need to remember that Liberty Global has a partnership with Netflix which we will soon be feeling the effects of sometime in 2018. Secondly, Loberty Global has been a huge proponent of forging partnerships with OTTs and I suppose he (the MD/CEO) will have to succumb to working with OTTs other than blocking them. Such is a slippery slop and can possibly erode their own revenue streams... especially when they offer OTA streaming through the FLOW To Go app, which can be accessed on Digicel's or FLOW's data networks.

    I so wish we'd had the genius of other MDs like Bill McCabe from FLOW Cayman for example, who spearheaded a vast swath of customer centric initatives like self-serve help platforms (like Zendesk) and rigourous adherence to transparency, brand image as well as an understanding for needing to push the market forward (something we're seeing in Digicel's 2030 vision). While I appreciate local talent, It befuddles me as to why FLOW's largest market is far behind in most of the company's offerings, most notably in broadband whereas markets served by talent who've had experience from working with other operators like Vodafone, AT&T, BT and the like are FAR ahead in other respects. Quite frankly, there is no time for big chat and puffing chest over OTTs when your competiton is ready to eviscerate your second largest revenue stream. Now's a critical juncture for the company to really sure up its core competencies and flex its muscle (i.e. scale and assets) to really assert its place in Jamaican telecoms for the next 10 or so years.
    You can stream Flow to go over the data networks, but the data plans are not designed to accommodate this. So the data runs out very, very quickly. I found out the hard way, when I tried. My data plan was out within 15 mins, Thank you for confirming the Liberty Global Netflix agreement. I knew I read somewhere about it taking place. Flow needs to white list the Flow to go app, and allow unrestricted access to the service for cable subscribers. Other from that, I totally agree with you. Even you as a major supporter and advocate for Flow. Has come out, and call them out for this one. That shows that they are making a wrong decision, if they go ahead with it.

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