Netcast, Internet TV, home theaters

Submitted by richardb on January 10, 2009 - 15:54

CES just ending, while we didn't attend, there was plenty of net info to get a sense of what's going on. Last year, we spent the day looking at the new Samsung products at Ed Bennet's house. Microsoft was at the two day demo showing off their new products for TV.

I've been saying for a few years that the consumer is ready and demanding that their home theater systems or TVs have access to the Internet. The Apple TV box is the best but not the only add on solution to achieve this capability until now.

To me, it so obvious the television should have an easy solution for not only access to the net but also an internal hard drive inside the TV. This year at CES, the buzz was really about the 3D TV sets, but if you look a little more closely, the big news is that many high end TV are being made with Internet capabilities.

Zooming ahead five years, you can really see what accessing and downloading the content from the internet will do to a variety of industries. The music and film industries will benefit greatly while TV networks will take it on the chin.

Self-programming really destroys the TV network business model. Today, I don't know anyone who watches their favorite shows during their air times. I never do. I use the DVR and fast forward through the commercials. I even record football games and fast forward in between plays reducing the game to an hour or so of watching.

When I was a kid, TV was a free service supported by advertising. Today, I pay hundreds of dollars each month to have access the hundreds of channels I never watch. Thus, I'm already a custom to paying for TV content.

Paying programming on demand would save me a considerable amount of money. Thus, I'm ready to do it. I suspect there are many in my category. Those who pay for TV content and self program.

At Culture Catch, we're really pushing the idea that producers of independent content like ours should clamp down and stop giving it away. Sure we'll loose tons of audience, those who will never pay for programming. Frankly, there isn't enough ad dollars in it to make a business models to keep the free-only audience.

The technology convergence for Internet interactive TV is arriving quickly to a consumer read to pay. This will not only be good for us, but the TV consumer as well.

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