Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Great Unbundling - Video Edition

he nature of information and media goods has always been a combination of content and channel, or distribution form. Traditionally, the distribution system has been tied to and identified with the content, but one of the consequences of the digital revolution was the emergence of alternative distribution channels for all kinds of content.  Welcome to the Great Unbundling.
The unbundling of print was easiest, but the growth of broadband has now enabled the growth of digital media distribution alternatives.  Historically, and still, video programming is primarily delivered through local broadcast stations, cable, and satellite services. On the other hand, the last few years have seen an explosion of Internet-based IPTV services, the emergence of IP-based cable alternatives like AT&T's U-verse, and many high-end cable systems converting from a video-IP mix to a fully IP-video system.
In a post on The Future of Media blog, Jim Louderback offers some predictions:

  • Within five years, most of the videos watched will be delivered over an open-IP network (i.e. the Internet)
  • Five super-premium video-channel bundles will emerge, largely from the current major players (the big networks and someone else).  The networks will develop direct-payment relationships with viewers to supplement advertising.
  • A few premium independent channels will offer "super-high quality programming" on demand, likely led by Netflix
  • A few demographically-targeted bundles of channels will emerge
  • Branding and prominence will be critical to success as channels and sources for video content continues to expand.
Louderback concludes:
In the end it's all about shelf space.  All of use are racing to build a session-shifting experience that lives as an icon across everything from the smallest smart-phone to the biggest smart TV.  Because in the next five years if it's a glowing rectangle, then it is a video consumption device - or what we used to call a TV.
Source -  Get Ready for the Great Video Unbundling,  The Future of Media blog

edited - had to fix a major formatting problem. (twice)

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