Switched on / The Content King can´t be dethroned, yet interactivity is going to revolutionize television. This is how Paula Byrne from the London-based company Pushbutton sees it, who, together with her team, was one of the finalists in the Interactive TV Award 2009. The only question is: How do the old strengths of television fit with its new interactive future?
Summer 2010, and one theme dominates the interactive TV market in the UK - the relentless march of IP-based television content and services to television screens and many other devices.
The domination of this subject is both surprising and impressive, as it happens in the face of very stiff competition from 3D, mobile device innovations, regulatory approval for Canvas (an online TV plan from a consortium of British broadcasters) and Apple bringing out something amazing pretty much every week.
Content is still king, but interactive content will be an even more powerful king.
The reason IP dominates, is because it is relentless and coming from many different places. Interactive content and services are popping up on all kinds of devices - Sony and Samsung TVs, Blu ray players, surround systems, games machines, and a wide range of mobile devices.
The IPTV storm has been approaching slowly for a long time. But what´s new and faster moving, is a surge in deployment and availability of interactive content and services on new devices.
This is nothing short of a revolution, and like previous revolutions it presents many challenges and opportunities for all its stake-holders.
Content owners are in a race to keep up with a growing number of distribution channels. Consumers face questions about where they should source content, how can they get the best value and picture quality? What should be stored on a local drive, and what should come from the Web? How do mobile devices fit into the picture? Should viewers use iPhone or Android apps to interact with the TV, or should they start buying dedicated connected TV apps?
As always, more questions than answers. But amongst all the new possibilities, we must remember that TV is first and foremost a content consumption device. It succeeds or fails on the quality and quantity of the content available, and the extent to which viewers can be persuaded to invest time in consuming this content.
Sure, all content is on a development path leading inexorably to an interactive future. It is inconceivable that any new content vehicle will emerge without a return path of some kind. But you still have to ask yourself this question. Do any of the new technologies - 3D, Hi def, IPTV or whatever, challenge the assertion that content is king?
The Pushbutton view is that content is indeed still king, but that interactive content will be an even more powerful king and a much more democratic sovereign.
IP-based television is going to make TV even more in tune with our lives than ever.
It starts by improving access to the familiar thing that we know and love the most about television, the content. But this is really only the fist step of journey that will take us to a very different future.
Some of the technical building blocks of this future are now emerging. IPTV is surely a corner stone. But the creative building blocks are still to be defined. How are services integrated with content? How are content and services conceived to have interactivity in their DNA, rather than bolted on as an after thought.
Well done Deutsche Telekom, for coming up with a slogan ‘TV in tune with our lives´ that keeps us focussed on the fundamentals, and reminds us of the responsibility we have as an industry, for building a TV landscape that keeps it in tune with our lives.
Paula Byrne -
- founded Pushbutton in 2002, following a successful career at BSkyB, where she headed up Sky Active. Pushbutton specialises in the design and build of interactive digital content and services for existing and emerging platforms. In 2009, Pushbutton was one of the finalists of Deutsche Telekom Interactive TV.
Dieser Beitrag wurde am Mittwoch, 15. September 2010 um 10:25 Uhr veröffentlicht und unter der Kategorie Medienwelt abgelegt. Sie können die Kommentare zu diesem Eintrag durch das RSS-Feed verfolgen. Sie haben die Möglichkeit, einen Kommentar zu hinterlassen oder einen Trackback von Ihrem Weblog zu senden.
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