LIVE FROM HUAWEI MOBILE BROADBAND FORUM 2016, TOKYO: The fates of broadcasters and the mobile industry are “inextricably intertwined”, according to Alex Wellen, chief product officer of CNN.
“We need the mobile operators to enable the ultimate experience for users around news,” he continued.
The executive noted that the shift to digital has transformed the way in which it operates. In the wake of the recent US presidential election, it saw “historic traffic”, with 500 million page views, 100 million video starts, and at one point 2.3 million concurrent streams – “and many of those streams were happening across mobile services across the globe”.
Wellen said the organisation is focused on “mobile, global and video” as drivers for growth.
“Our mission is to be the worldwide leader in mobile and video news and information, bar none, that is our goal. And the only way we can do that is with deep, deep collaboration with the mobile operators. It can’t happen any other way,” he said.
In particular, he called out the impact of video.
“We’ve heard all about video, and live video, video on demand, and clips, but right now delivering live video and removing the friction, increasing the quality and minimising the latency, opimising the experience…the best products are where product, technology and editorial come together and there’s something bigger,” he said.
A key factor in driving digital is making the most effective use of content at its disposal – but this does not mean using the same material across-the-board.
“For us to be relevant, we need to be where the customers are getting the news, because they need that credible resource. Snapchat, Apple News, Google AMP, Line, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, we need to be on all of them, and we need to be authentic – we can’t just take the same content and repurpose it on another platform”.