[opendtv] Re: Punching Above Its Weight, Upstart Netflix Pokes at HBO - NYTimes.com

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 24 Feb 2014 00:17:23 +0000

Craig Birkmaier wrote:

> See the response to John's message and articles I posted therein. The
> need to move VOD to the IP side of the business because they do not have
> the bandwidth on the live video side,

See my response to Jim. VOD has been offered by cable systems, using their 
"internal" DVRs, for many years now. If you add a new VOD source, I would 
expect the same VOD scheme, or IP unicast if they didn't use IP before, to be 
used for the new VOD content. This content *always* must have used "bandwidth" 
that was separate from their live broadcast streams. More VOD options should 
*not* translate directly to more VOD bandwidth requirement. Users can only 
watch so much VOD at any given time. (Yes, eventually, if many people love VOD, 
you'd see a net increase in total VOD bandwidth needed.)

> For TV, however, the changes have been SLOW, evolutionary, and most
> important, mostly controlled by the content congloms. They are making a
> fortune off of the MVPDs, AND making good money off of the OTT sites like
> Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu Plus, and Internet stores like iTunes and
> Amazon.

Why shouldn't they? They have the content people want to watch, not just here 
in the US, but overseas everywhere. Of course, they will use whatever tools 
they can to get the content out there.

> It's Netflix, Amazon, Apple et al, that are on the rug; the congloms can
> pull it out from under them whenever they please.

Again, that's exactly what I've been saying, Craig! The congloms hold all the 
cards, because they have the content. They will use middlemen as required, to 
get the content distributed. The congloms that can best exploit the new 
technologies will ultimately win out.

BTW, I've noticed that CBS (also ABC) has been experimenting with their web 
site. I've noticed a very telling shift recently. It used to be that at their 
main portal for catch-up viewing, the episodes available online were arranged 
by their broadcast schedule. So for example, you went to Monday, and they would 
show the Monday prime time shows, click on one and you'd see all the available 
episodes of that show.

They got rid of that structure. Instead, now the show only the most recently 
updated shows first, then the less recently updated, independent of any daily 
broadcast schedule. They do give the date of when the episodes aired, but the 
emphasis on the weekly schedule is totally absent.

Very telling. This type of shift is why I think the networks "get it."


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