Couch Potato Heaven

from the video-on-demand,-yet-again dept

Newsweek has an article about how the cable companies are banking on video on demand, yet again. Over the years the question of video-on-demand pops up over and over again, but it seems like the technology is really in place for cable companies, and they see it as a way to prevent the TiVos of the world from taking over. The satellite companies, without any VOD abilities, are instead pushing TiVo-like PVR functionality, setting up something of a battle. However, some analysts give the cable companies the edge, saying that satellite doesn’t work everywhere (ignoring, of course, that there are many parts of the country where cable doesn’t work either…). The article also suggests that this really a battle of satellite/PVR vs. cable/VOD ignoring, again, the fact that anybody can use a PVR on a cable system as well. The article ends with the scary notion that soon, you will have to pay for every individual TV show you want to watch. This is, of course, going in the wrong direction. People have shown that they’re willing to pay a flat fee for access, and that they don’t like being nickled-and-dimed for content. They’ve also shown that they like the freedom to do whatever they want with the content they get. PVRs line up with what consumers want. VOD which doesn’t let you fast forward through commercials, and forces you to pay for every item you watch goes against what consumers want. Which do you think will find a more accepting audience?

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