Sunday, October 26, 2008

Internet TV will it be a true competitor to Cable

Video over Internet is getting popular as seen by the time the younger demo are spending on YouTube's of the world. The time and unique users watching video on PC is ever increasing. We are even seeing an increase with mobile video viewing. However the form factors provided by TV and mobile have limitations, in the end the consumer would like some of this content to become available on TV. 
I want to see my Hulu videos, YouTube favorites, and Netflix content on TV. Now, Roku is doing a good job with getting Netflix content on TV. However, the way to get the rest is via your PC. This may be an easy task for us media types but for the common consumer its a exercise in futility. We need a device to manage video over the internet and our other media scenarios such as DVDs, cable, etc. 
One tenet that we must imbibe is that clutter in the living room is a non-starter. i.e. we need to reduce the number of devices not increase it. Women rule the living room design and they hate clutter. Well, we know what guys will do.  To make this happen,  I see a great opportunity in co-tailing on the Blu-ray players.  Consumer have to purchase the percieved winner in the HD DVD world, its price point is coming down (below $200 is the tipping point for mass consumer adoption). If folks like Hulu, Netflix, YouTube tie in with Blu-ray device manufacturers, they have a perfect entry into the consumer's living room. 
Of course, the other entry is via the gaming devices such as Xbox, Wii, and Playstation. Microsoft has already put its IPTV player in XBox, so we know where they are heading. 
The other option is to have the Cable guys do it but given my work with Cable guys, I dont think they have the aptitude or will to make such a device.

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