Meanwhile streaming music services Pandora and iHeartRadio announced at CES steps to make their services even more ubiquitous, with more auto deals. Pandora, which just revealed plans to roll out ads to its auto platforms this month, announced new partnerships with carmakers to reach 130 vehicle models.
Digital studio Dreamworks Animation is taking an entirely different approach at leveraging new technology to grow its content distribution. The studio is partnering with kids' tablet maker Fuhu to create the "DreamTab," to design a new tablet, featuring its videos and characters from its movies in a range of games. The tablet features privacy controls and the ability for parents to set things like timers and reminders when kids are done with screen time and need to go outside and play, or when it's tooth-brushing time.
(Read more: 2014 Media/Tech: Big deals, bigger convergence, biggest mobile)
Here's the business angle for Dreamworks Animation: the tablet includes a ton of its videos (along with free Disney and Nickelodeon videos) and there are a bunch of games featuring its characters – a great way to get kids hooked on the characters and introduce them to upcoming films and TV series. And with kids no longer watching as much linear TV with commercials as the use of Netflix and Hulu rises, it's crucial to find new ways to get kids to drag their parents to the theater. Plus, Dreamworks Animation will get a share of the revenue from tablet sales.
The tablets will come in a couple sizes – the standard, about the size of an iPad, will cost less than $300, but there's also a much larger version, designed for both viewing videos and two-player games, which will cost more. The hope is that with Dreamworks Animation's support and characters Fuhu will be able to build on the success of its prior kids tablet, the Nabi, which sold more than 2 million units last year and on average stream over 20 million every week.