Optus to launch 5G plans \ SWM restructures exec structure \ Apple News+ launches in Australia \ Facebook’s new video tools


In this week’s edition, we look at the upcoming launch of Optus’ 5G mobile plans, SWM’s restructuring of exec structure, the launch of Apple News+ in Australia, and Facebook’s new video tools.


BVOD revenues for FTA operators in Australia (A$m)


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Optus to launch 5G plans 

Source: OPTUS

Optus is due to announce its 5G plans in the next few weeks even as it announced the launch of two new 5G-capable handsets. Optus also announced that it has close 200 5G sites live, up from more than 100 sites in August 2019. Optus has been conservative in marketing its 5G mobile service and has instead been focusing on 5G fixed wireless which is in line with Venture Insights’ view that telcos could leverage 5G to push fixed wireless products to specific customer segments. The newly launched handsets also come with free access to Optus Sport and 12 month free access to Apple Music. Streaming content services and especially live sports streaming remains an important part of the Optus’s growth strategy. For a more detailed look at Optus’s recent financial and operating performance and how 5G and Optus Sport will drive growth at Optus, click through to read our report.

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SWM restructures exec structure

Australian TV advertising revenues by sub-segment (A$bn)


James Warburton, CEO of Seven West Media is pushing ahead with his plans to turnaround the FTA broadcaster by cutting staff across divisions and hiring three new key executives. The move is expected to result in cost savings of about $20m. This is on the back of a subdued earnings performance from the FTA market which saw SWM report a 10% decrease in EBITDA for FY19. As per Venture Insights’ previous reports – the FTA adex market faces major structural headwinds as audiences transition away from linear television. To counter this, FTAs must focus on growing new revenue streams including 1) transition to digital platforms (BVOD), 2) find new ways to monetise existing content, 3) develop programmatic and addressable TV solutions and 4) identify and invest in adjacencies. SWM’s latest move is in line with our view and step in the right direction as it transitions to a more digital world for broadcasters. For more on the changing dynamics for broadcasters, click through to read our report.

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Apple News+ launches in Australia


Apple News+ has teamed up with NewsCorp as it officially launches in Australia with more 150 publications for $14.99 per month. Apple News+ will include local publications such as The Australian, The Daily Telegraph, Herald Sun, The Courier Mail, The Advertiser, Vogue, Australian Women’s Health, Elle, The Australian Women’s Weekly, Harper’s Bazaar Australia, GQ, Australian Men’s Health, Delicious and Australian Geographic. Traditional newspapers and magazines continue to transition to an online model which includes a combination of advertising + subscription based revenues. Apple News+ which is essentially a Netflix type service for journalism might excite investors but the evidence that users actually want such a service is not strong. For a more detailed look at the potential of Apple News+ and Apple’s services strategy, click through to read a report from our UK research partner, Enders Analysis.

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Facebook’s new video tools

Most popular app for mobile video streaming Australia


Facebook has announced a number of updates for video creators and publishers which include enhanced video creation tools, better features and improved audience analytics. Facebook also announced a number of updates to the video editing capabilities in Instagram and IGTV. Facebook’s latest move will help address some of the concerns that video creators had with regards to Facebook’s video strategy which lacked the same flexibility and feature set of its largest competitor – YouTube. While Facebook is enhancing its video creation tools, it has a long way to go to catch up with YouTube which remains the most popular app for video streaming in Australia as per Venture Insights mobile consumer survey. For more on Facebook’s approach towards video, click through to read out report.

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