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Re: death of the net predicted by deloitte -- film at 11

  • From: Joe Abley
  • Date: Mon Feb 12 09:11:24 2007

On 12-Feb-2007, at 12:03, Brandon Butterworth wrote:

I think you're presupposing that the concept of "channels" is
something that will persist.

For some time.

There's quite an industry with an interest in maintaining that. It
probably won't vanish until the current generations die.

It could be argued that channels are already simply a transport mechanism for on-demand content, at least to the growing population of users who choose to pay extra for PVR/TiVO functionality at home. And, interestingly, the people pushing the PVR functionality at users here are the satellite and cable providers; there's no third-party, packaged solution for the non-technical user.

You might imagine that these PVR-pushing cablecos are expecting the death of channel-oriented content, and are preparing for it by seizing control of the set-top box. Having a general-purpose computer installed in half of Canadian living rooms, pre-cabled with AV and CATV, with an IP address and a 80GB hard disk, presenting an on- demand-like interface that consumers are familiar with seems useful if you're anticipating a head-to-head competition with the likes of Apple.

[Perhaps my viewpoint is skewed because channel-delivered TV content in Canada is horrible; it's almost as bad as American TV. I seem to think that broadcast TV in the UK more tolerable, although I haven't really seen it since I left the UK in the mid 90s so perhaps I'm just deluded.]

Channel based and discrete delivery of content (radio vs records,
tv/cinema vs vhs/dvd) have coexisted for some time.

If one loses ground it's not a problem unless you take sides.

Cursory consideration of your examples above provide clues as to which way the scale is tipping; radio has for a long time been a way to promote record sales, and the video stores here are now half-full with boxed sets of TV series on DVD.

It looks to me like people increasingly want their content on-demand, and that there's a growing industry supplying that demand. While I don't doubt you when you describe an industry whose bottom line will benefit from the persistence of channel-based content delivery, I don't think those companies are the only ones in the game.