Devices, Not Content Are King


Paul Levinson, an author and professor of media studies at Fordham University? is among those who believe that traditional content is ceeding its preeminence to “hot devices and popular digital media.?”

“What moves the industry forward is the new media and devices and the public’s love of them.Remember, live theater was once the main entertainment.” (via )



And what entertained them at the live theater? the seats? or could it have been…the content?


Content was NEVER king. Devices are not king.

CONNECTIVITY is king. The ability to connect and interact is what is king. What was the first killer App on the Net? Email. Not reading someone elses content. Not a device. But interaction with others on the Net.


Devices (and other enablers such as services) are the king-makers. Content is (still) the king.

Kindle, iPad etc are enablers. So is youtube or netflix. People use devices and services to get to content. Some devices and services do this in new/interesting ways than others. These get popular, make money, occupy mindshare – and give the false impression that they are king. But they are not.

Yes, you will fiddle with a now iToy for a while. Eventually, you will either get bored of it, or more important things will happen in your life..leaving you little time to continue to admire the iCandy.

Cars (as an example) have clear market segments and each segment has established features and UI. A car is an enabler for travel. The seat cushions wont make you go gaga. How long would we let the equivalent on a phone or a tablet keep us enthralled?

Om Malik

FTM… first of all enjoying your comments across the network on different posts. Thank you.

I would add to your comment: the king makers have always been more powerful and the real kings throughout history. I think we sometimes forget that and focus too much on the “kings” so to speak.

Sid & Co.

Devices are kings as long as you churn them out fast, very fast. And being fast is not good enough, it’s got to be least version 1.And once that happens, curiosity takes over. But then again, the same happens with content

Om Malik


I think what the professor is saying that today the devices — access points — are determining the fate of content versus the other way around. I think it is the increasing personalization — let’s call it hyper personalization which is at work here.

Kin Lane

Where would a content streams fall in this formula? A twitter or Facebook influencer could rule. Is it the content or the tool?

NA Rudy

Live theater was once king, but crappy live theater content still lost. Crappy TV lost. Crappy movies lose. Crappy websites lose.

No matter the technology, crappy content loses and good content wins. Except, of course, for Family Matters.

NA Rudy

No, I meant Family Matters was crappy content that won!

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