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Cable TV Disintermediation

August 30, 2010 14:29:41.000

TechCrunch thinks that the disintermediation of cable TV is about to hit the masses - because so many companies are now nibbling at the edges of that space, and looking to make a break: Google, Apple, Microsoft, NetFlix, Hulu - all hold a piece of the puzzle, and if they start to put those pieces together, the days of $100 + cable bills could go the way of record stores:

For most people, buying each television show you want to watch doesn’t make a lot of sense. But renting them for a cheaper price does. As a person who only is interested in a handful of shows, I expect such a solution to be a fraction of a fraction of the cost of my cable bill. I can’t wait.

That certainly describes me, and I think the current teenage/young adult cohort as well. The big things missing:

  • Channel Surfing - admit it, lots of us spend a lot of time aimlessly looking for "something" to watch, before settling on something from the 500 channel plate
  • Live sports

A large enough selection of items for quick and easy rental might deal with the former, but the latter will be a tougher nut to crack. Take college football and the NFL, for instance - huge followings, but the viewing is all live. Time shifting just isn't an option when it comes to sports. If and when internet based TV starts getting access to sports events, we'll know that cable tv has reached the downhill side of the mountain.

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posted by James Robertson

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