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Press Start: The Rise of Video Game IP

by Lucy Goddard, Senior Director, Client Solutions

TL;DR

In a hurry? Here's our pick of the top news items of the week.

  • Next month, Warner Bros. Discovery will rebrand HBO Max to Max and will add Discovery+ content to the service. (Variety)

  • Microsoft’s new Bing integration for its SwiftKey app lets users chat with the AI bot directly from their mobile keyboard. (The Verge)

  • Amazon is introducing a cloud service called Bedrock that developers can use to enhance their software with text-generating AI systems. (CNBC)

_Interesting_ campaigns / creative

  • KitKat used AI to create a series of ads reminding Australians that AI is just another great excuse to have a break. (Campaign Brief)

  • In a recent ad for its #artificialcommunity campaign, Burger King replaced its community manager with AI. (AdLatina)

  • Samsung replaced one of the "least advanced photobooths in town" with one of its 200MP ISOCELL sensors and then showed the images over a billboard in London's Piccadilly Circus. (Phone Arena)

  • In celebration of the brewery’s 150-year anniversary, Beck launched Autonomous, a limited-edition beer designed with AI. (The Festivals)

Audiences

  • About 1 in 4 US adults either spent less on or stopped paying entirely for various entertainment expenses due to inflation. (Morning Consult)

  • 52% of US Gen Z adults are frequent travelers, on par with Millennials. (Morning Consult)

  • 70% of US adults, including 83% of weekly AI users, believe current AI tools are capable of achieving artificial general intelligence. (Morning Consult)

  • 91% of Mexican households with fixed broadband watch movies, series or events online. (BBVision)

  • In the US, Millennials are the age group most likely to buy products or services advertised on podcasts. (Insider)

  • The pandemic has fueled a large increase in viewing of English content in India, with 65% of the urban Indian SVOD audience now watching English content. (Ormax Media)

Platforms

  • Google TV expanded its free streaming lineup to over 800 live TV channels. (Tech Crunch)

  • Instagram added new features to its creator marketplace and expanded access to brand agencies. (Tech Crunch)

  • Microsoft’s PC Game Pass launched in 40 new countries. (The Verge)

  • Peacock subscribers can now stream content on Meta Quest devices. (Tech Crunch)

  • Google will shut down Currents, the work-focused Google Plus replacement. (The Verge)

  • Pinterest announced new safety tools and parental controls. (Tech Crunch)

  • NPR announced it is quitting Twitter after a dispute with the social media platform over its editorial independence. (Mediaite)

  • Twitter’s ad business will bring in $2B less in 2023 than previously projected. (Insider)

  • SVOD losses will continue to mount this year while streamers keep working to build subscriber scale. (Variety)

  • New Australian “total TV” ratings data, known as VOZ, is expected to launch in May to better reflect how Australians are consuming TV. (TV Tonight)

  • Channel 4 will launch a high impact digital advertising experiment. (Digital TV Europe)

  • Porsche will allow passengers to stream film and TV on built-in screens. (The Guardian)

Content

  • YouTube started its presale of NFL Sunday Ticket subscription, with presale ending in June. (Tech Crunch)

  • Succession hit a series high of 2.5M viewers when HBO aired episode 3 of the final season. (Variety)

  • Netflix announced a straight-to-series order for an untitled animated series set within the Stranger Things universe. (THR)

  • The Super Mario Bros. Movie exceeded expectations in its weekend debut, bringing in $377M globally and $204.6M domestically. (Axios)

  • Paramount+ has become an official partner of Formula 1, as it pushes deeper into sports content. (Deadline)

  • Snap has signed new music licensing deals to expand its Sounds library. (Tech Crunch)

  • Spotify is targeting radio broadcasters with its latest product update that will make it easier to covert radio shows into on-demand podcasts. (THR)

  • South Korea is now the largest producer of hit series globally for Netflix outside the US, with more than 60% of its customers having watched a Korean show last year. (Bloomberg)

  • Warner Bros. Discovery is planning to add live sports to its Max streaming service. (CNET)

  • Endeavor could bundle the streaming rights for both UFC and WWE. (Sports Pro Media)

  • Premier League football clubs rejected a £15M Netflix series, deeming the offer too low. (Talk Sport)

_Tech_ _&_ AI

  • Researchers populated a tiny virtual town with AI, and it was very wholesome. (Tech Crunch)

  • OpenAI will start paying people as much as $20K to help the company find bugs in its AI systems. (Bloomberg)

  • Microsoft is bringing Windows 11 to its HoloLens 2 headset. (The Verge)

  • BGaming launched a new themed slot, Alien Fruits, that includes AI-generated graphics. (Yogonet)

Location-based _entertainment_

  • Atlantic City's casinos are still feeling the impact of the pandemic, with profits down 4.6% YoY in 2022. (Yogonet)

  • Slowing consumer spending, reduced availability of credit and rising penetration of e-commerce may contribute to the closure of 50K US retail stores by 2027. (Retail Dive)

  • BTS will launch an immersive fan experience to celebrate the group’s 10th anniversary. (Rolling Stone)

  • Australia’s second largest movie theater operator, Hoyts, has been put up for sale. (Variety)

  • Disneyland will close Splash Mountain on May 31st for an extensive reimagining process. (KTLA)

  • Katy Perry announced the final performance dates of her Las Vegas Strip residency, with the last show being November 4th. (Fox)

  • Event organizer Billy McFarland announced that Fyre Festival is making a return. (E!)

  • The Cannes Film Festival unveiled the lineup for its 76th edition which includes films from Martin Scorsese, Wes Anderson, and Catherine Breillat. (Variety)

  • Detroit casinos reported $119.2M in gaming revenue during March, a 12% increase MoM. (Yogonet)

_Mental_ health

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