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Trends and Convergence of Cable

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Mary Ann Principe

on 12 September 2012

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Transcript of Trends and Convergence of Cable

in Television and Cable Trends and Convergence Still, their introduction further eroded the audience for traditional over-the-air television, as people could now watch rented and purchased videos. VCR also allowed time shifting, taping a show for later viewing, and zipping, fast forwarding through taped commercials. As a result, people became comfortable with, in fact came to expect, more control over when, what, and how they watched television. viewers can stop images with no loss fidelity
can subtitle a movie in a number of languages
can search for specific scenes from an on-screen picture menu
and can access information tracts that give background on the movie, its production, and its personnel. In March 1999, Philips Electronics unveiled its version of the Digital Video Recorder (DVR), TiVo, and soon after, Replay Networks introduced ReplayTV. Both contain digital software that puts a significant amount of control over content in viewers’ hands. Today, about 30% of all TV households have DVR, and industry predictions are that the proportion will swell to 50% by 2012 (Mermigas, 2009). The traditional television broadcasters see digitization of television signals as their salvation, because it would allow them to carry multiple forms of content on the spectrum space currently used to carry their one broadcast signal. clearer digital video images (although not of HDTV quality)
Internet access
paging services
and constant data flow of information such as stocks and sports scores Television on the Internet Television on the internet was slow to take off because of copyright and piracy concerns, and because few viewers had sufficient bandwidth, space on the wires bringing content into people’s homes. So for several years the most typical video fare on the Net was a variety of short specialty transmissions such as movie trailers, short independent films, music videos, and news clips. But the development of increasingly sophisticated video compression software and the parallel rise of homes with broadband Internet connections (60% of American adults have broadband at home, Raine, 2010) have changed that. Because broadband offers greater information-carrying capacity (that is, it increases bandwidth), television on the Internet is increasingly common, a situation heralded by the 2006 announcements by the three major broadcast networks that they would join providers such as... Download Revolution!!! Each is trying its own model – rent a download for a short time, buy a download without commercials for a higher fee than one with ads, monthly subscriptions for limitless downloads – as the search for the night formula unfolds. $2 free to 4$ old and new shows contemporary shows free classic shows free few contemporary shows more than 1,700 free!!! from NBC, ABC and FOX 42 million viewers a month!!! free of course :) partnership deals with CBS and several Hollywood studios Program owners view the internet as easy money, as its costs very little to transfer programming to new platforms. Syndicators, both off-network and first-run, will be especially well served by the Internet. Video on the Internet A majority of Internet users report watching online video, 20% every day. In fact, online video attracts more than 142 million unique viewers a month, each averaging more than 188 minutes, who together watch more than 11 billion streams (Nielsen, 2010b). Much of that viewing is of content that originated on network and cable television, but much is also Web-only video (most if the number of stream videos is the measure). None of these series would have been possible without the phenomenal success of... Attracting as few as 600,000 unique visitors in October 2005, it now draws 113 million Americans viewers a month watching 6.6 billion videos. U.S. Internet users watch 15 billion videos a month overall (Nielsen, 2010b). They are drawn primarily by user-generated video. YouTube alone receives more than 80,000 video uploads every day, over 9,200 hours of user-produced content. Other popular video-sharing sites are Ultimately, the convergence of the Internet and television will be even more seamless as there are several new technologies further discouraging the distinction between the two. Interactive Television The Internet is not the only technology that permits interactivity. Cable and satellite also allow viewers to “talk back” to content providers. But it is digital cable television, the delivery of digital images and other information to subscribers that offers the truest form of interaction. In 2009 there were 42 million digital cable subscribers in the United States. Many digital cable subscribers also use their cable connections to access the Internet. Currently, there are also 38.8 million users with cable modems connecting their computers to the Net via a specified Internet service provider, or ISP (NTCA, 2010). As a result, “must-carry” has taken on new meaning in the Internet age, as Congress and the courts debate cable’s power to grant or limit access to its wires to outside service and content providers and those providers and those providers’ right to demand that access. The essay “Brand X: Controlling the Flow of Information” above explores the landmark--and controversial--June 2005 Supreme Court decision in favour of cable’s right to restrict outside providers’ access to their lines. Cable’s digital channels permit multiplexing, carrying two or more different signals over the same channel. This in turn, is made possible by digital compression, which “squeezes” signals to permit multiple signals to be carried over one channel. Digital compression works by removing redundant information from the transmission of the signal. For example, the set behind two actors in the movie scene might not change for several minutes. So why transmit the information that the set is there? Simply transmit the digital data that indicate what has changed in the scene,
not what has not. This expanded capacity makes possible interactive cable, that is, the ability of subscribers to talk back to the system operator (extra space on the channel is used for this back talk). And this permits the following services, many of which you already use: video-on-demand, one-click shopping (you see it, you click on it, you buy it), local information on demand (news, traffic, and weather), program interactivity (choose a camera angle, learn more about an actor’s career, play along with game show contestants), interactive program guides, etc. Phone-Over-Cable Another service offered by many MSOs is phone service over cable wires. Phone-Over-Cable has spread slowly. Currently there are 18.7 million cable-delivered residential telephone subscribers (NTCA, 2010). there are 2 reasons: First is technical-although the technology for quality phone-over-cable exist, the problem is getting manufacturers to agree on compatibility standards.
Second, phone-over-cable is slow in coming is consumer resistance. Many people, already dissatisfied with the level of service provided by their cable companies, are wary of relying on them for phone service as well. But phone-over-cable offers an additional benefit to MSOs. If telephone service can be delivered by the same cable that brings television into the home, so too can the Internet. And what’s more, if the cable line is broadband capable of handling digitally compressed data, that Internet service can be even faster than the service provided over traditional phone lines. Cable, in other words, can become a one-stop communications provider: television.
VOD.
audio.
high-speed Internet access.
long-distance and local phone service.
multiple phone lines.
fax. This is bundling. Mobile Video One way to receive and view television is on a mobile device, either a cell phone or other portable video player. We’ve already seen in this chapter that Apple iTunes allows downloading of television programs not only to home computers but also to portable iPods. DBS provider Dish Network has its version, letting subscribers download movies from their home receivers, Verizon’s Vcast service (Chapter 7) can download music videos as well as music. Other early entrants into the mobile phone video race are with PSC Vision are just a few of the content providers striking deals with these services. All are chasing the 100 million U.S. consumers with video-capable cell phones (“Nielsen: 10 Million Mobile Users,” 2008), and the winners will be those who can best answer to questions: What content will people be willing to watch on mobile devices? And how big will the audience actually be? Cell phone video providers think brief content works best. for example,
creates mobisodes, special 1-minute scenarios of its television hit 24. had 58.2 million cell phone users check in on its 2010 Olympic programming in the first 11 days of coverage (Walsh, 2010).
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