Gates: TV is Doomed

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Speaking to fellow “world leaders” at Davos on Saturday, Bill Gates gave television five years to live. Granted, Microsoft has their own IPTV effort already working in Switzerland, so this could just be a really hard sell to the Swiss audience. “I’m stunned how people aren’t seeing that with TV, in five years from now, people will laugh at what we’ve had.”

373406063_3dccfda800.jpgAs Download Squad points out, this isn’t exactly a cutting edge prediction. Maybe he ran into Chad Hurley, who explained that this whole video on the internet thing could be big — huge even — and got excited. Meanwhile, today Bill’s busy lowering his standards and appearing on regular old TV — the Daily Show on Comedy Central, among others — to promote the release of Windows Vista. Though if I were Bill, I’d leave the funny to Demetri Martin.

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hubert

Of course, the “people will laugh at what we’ve had” bit should be understood as a sudden outburst of humbleness. As Microsoft is as of today a major supplier of IPTV solutions to the world’s largest telcos.

And of course, The Bill is right. In 5 years, we’re going to laugh about a lot of things:
– M$ Vista, as it’s successor will look a lot like OS-XX
– yer olde style walled garden IPTV, as current deployments are just DSL-broadcasting solutions
– and not to forget our blurry 2007ish definitions of IPTV (as in U-verse) and broadband tv (as in YouTube). Because the definition of TV isn’t “a moving image on an electric displaying device”. That’s why DVD isn’t tv, nor is meditating in front of your screen saver.

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