I’m sure you’ve noticed that many folks – maybe even you – spend a lot more time watching video and reading stuff on their computers than they used to. I know – I’m pretty observant. Some of what everyone seems to be watching is user-generated – weird YouTube videos of babies and dogs – some are the sort of thing you used to see more of on TV – music videos – and some actually is time-shifted TV – Hulu.
What’s been going on has only been the first step, in my opinion. What’s happening now is way more important and could bring about yet another round of media business changes.
What I mean is the elimination of the computer to watch content in this manner. While you may have heard of Roku or Boxee, you may not be familiar with what they do or what they potentially mean. If you’re in the media business, you’d better learn, especially since the 800-ton gorilla – Google – is releasing GoogleTV and TV manufacturers are making it far easier to integrate these devices with their sets.
iSuppli Corporation estimated in July that 28 million web-enabled TVs would be sold worldwide this year, more than double sales in 2009. By 2014 the firm forecasts a 428.6% increase to 148 million units sold, reports eMarketer. My guess is that the demo profiles of those purchasers will be pretty attractive.
Implications? Well, no cable or satellite needed for starters. Just an internet connection. Obviously areas such as entertainment will be affected way before live sports but even some pioneers such as MLB are on these devices already and most leagues are already streaming their games online for a fee, making them accessible. What does this do to traditional distribution models?
If you’re a content provider you need to be thinking about this. If you’re a distributor you had better be working on a plan. As much have things have changed over the last few years in the video distribution space, my guess is we’re about to see even bigger changes and you won’t have to be an IT person to make it work.
Do you own one of these boxes – yet? Let’s hear about it.