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NTV Predictions: Video in the Living Room

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Among the questions we’ve asked our panel of experts was this one: Will online video make it into the living room in 2008?

Their selected responses are below. We’d love to hear your take on the question or on our panelists’ predictions in the comments. For more information on the NewTeeVee 2008 outsourced predictions, see this post.

cioffi1.jpgJohn Cioffi, Hitachi America professor of engineering at Stanford (a.k.a. DSL soothsayer):


desilva.gifRichard de Silva, general partner at Highland Capital (investor in Metacafe):

“Not yet — the boxes and technologies which will bridge the gap are still difficult to use and the navigation paradigm hasn’t been worked out for browsing online videos from your couch.”

diaz.jpgZadi Diaz, Smashface Productions (co-creator of EPIC-FU):

“Yes, but in a rudimentary way. The problem will still be finding a way
to merge the lean-back experience of TV with the lean-forward or
immersive experience of the web. The visual element may make it to the
living room, but the full experience may not necessarily ‘make it.'”

jenkins.jpgHenry Jenkins, director of the MIT Comparative Media Studies Program and Peter de Florez Professor of Humanities (media and popular culture academic):

“You are falling prey here to what I call the black box fallacy — the idea that the future lies in the integration of media technologies. Certainly, some consumers are going to want ways to watch YouTube and other online media
content via their living room flatscreen televisions, yet they will quickly discover that the content that engages us in grainy, halting images on a small screen may not be the stuff we want to stare at projected on a wall-size unit. There’s an intimacy about the confessional video, say, projected in a small window on our computer or an immediacy about the kinds of videos we want to watch and pass on to our friends that’s very different from the awe we feel watching a wall-size projection of Battlestar Galactica with Surround Sound.”

kliavkoff.jpgGeorge Kliavkoff, chief digital officer, NBC Universal (former interim Hulu CEO and leader of other NBC tech projects):

“It will definitely get there. For me, the interesting issues are how it will get there, who controls the food chain and how long it will take until it is pervasive. Customers have clearly indicated that the solution cannot include the hassle, cost or shelf space required for another box. That means the service will most likely be delivered either through the existing satellite/cable box, a game console or the TV itself. I’m spreading my bets.”

8 Responses to “NTV Predictions: Video in the Living Room”

  1. I think Nintendo has beat the bunch to the punch once again . It is a total waste of space to include video players , in a gaming console , when streaming video is cheaper and can be far more lucrative for the provider. They are waiting to release the full potential of this ( Wii) bad boy , and will probably put the final nail in the competition’s coffin , when the time is right. I see it happening around Nov. , just in time for Santa to get busy loading up the elves with work orders and overtime.

  2. In my living room, where we gather as a family of 3 after dinner, we watch both television – it’s on for my husband – and my son and I watch TV series on our computers. Yes, with earplugs I admit. But is that really a stranger sight than each member of a family reading their own book?

    Even if we could access online video easily on a flat super size TV screen, it wouldn’t be satisfying for our family because we all have different interests and only rarely agree on watching the same show.

    And as we watch TV online, my son is checking out Facebook, sending instant messages and text messaging. I’m checking my RSS feeds and will interrupt a video stream to blog.

    Simply watching TV passively, no matter where it comes from (network or online) is no longer enough, we need to multitask. And we don’t want to be confined to a Joost or Babelgum platform either. We simply adjust the size of our video screen to open our own applications.

    Could that be the future?

    Link to post

  3. I really starting to be convinced that a game console will use its existing install base and internet connectivity to exploit media convergence and stream video from the internet so people keep interest in thier console .

    The Xbox and playstation already do this with HD and Blue ray playback and DivX compatiblity as well as Xbox Live streaming video .

    The Wii might be the dark horse here and I can see why Nintendo didnt bother to put DVD playback in the console when they can Just stream Video to it .

    In Japan the Wii has a Video Channel already and a TV guide .

    Regie Fils Amie aluded to this sort of convergence at the Dow Jones Technology Innovations conferece in November where he said “There are other Channel oportunities .They may look like games they may not look like games”