The New Market of Video and TV
The landscape of competitors and strategies in the TV and video market has experienced considerable change over the past 10 years. While Blockbuster and Hollywood Video used to rule the map, the emergence of Youtube, Redbox, and others have forcefully taken over as prime contenders in the industry.
I know what you are thinking, this was so 2005, right? Well, even though social and streaming video sites have been main stage for quite some time, new developments by the now big time players are looking to take things to another level.
Netflix, the movie by mail juggernaut, has offered consumers the ability to stream certain film titles and TV shows online for quite some time. This has proved to be an extremely popular feature that users have flocked to. However, due to copyright issues, Netflix has been limited in their available streaming titles. Personally, I find this frustrating, especially when all I want to do is kick back and throw a quality film on the computer and my best options to pick from are Confessions of a Shopaholic or Dora the Explorer: Season 3. As much as I love Spanish speaking cartoons and watching other people purchase clothing, somehow I am still always in search of a better option.
Soon my worries will be lessened since Netflix has announced a deal it has signed with Relativity Media for the rights to stream their content. While not a groundbreaking deal, Relativity does produce an upwards of 20-30 big screen titles a year, giving Netflix a launching pad to expand their streaming collection. The implications of this agreement may be bigger than what is on the table at the moment. While pay-movie channels such as HBO and Showtime have held the bulk of the revenue for subscription service movie and TV, the future of this market may exist within streaming video.
Similarly, Hulu (a free online video and TV streaming site), has debuted its Hulu Plus service. Hulu allows users to watch select TV shows and movies online for free, but with a $9.99 a month subscription will now let customers view entire TV seasons in a higher 720p resolution.
Will Neflix and Hulu’s new business decisions trigger the end of cable TV and pay-movie channels? Not likely, at least for a good while. Although, in a digitally networked age, I believe that the future of television and video is online, in one capacity or another. As these two video and TV streaming companies work to expand, they will be slowly chipping away at the traditional TV fortress. I am anxious to see what the future of streaming video holds, and where these companies take it. In the meantime, while you are waiting for the revolution to come on TV, it is probably already streaming online.