Why smart TV OEMs should pay consumers to “plug in”

If TV OEMS are going to embrace smart TVs, they need a business model that fits this new paradigm. Up-front, one-burst revenue models are being replaced by longer-term, services-oriented relationships. The key to success in this new world is ensuring that new smart-TV owners are connected and engaged, and that they stay engaged for the life of the device.

Recent research shows that while consumers are buying smart TVs in droves, a large chunk of these shiny new boxes aren’t getting plugged in. Simply put, the promise of the smart-TV market is one in danger of going unrealized unless these dormant boxes plug into the network. One way to entice consumers to plug in and register their smart TVs is to reward them — not unlike getting a $100 check from Sprint for the purchase price of a new smartphone. While the $50 or $100 may seem like a lot for a margin-challenged device like a smart TV, the payback on these devices is over many years, not just on the day of purchase. For more strategies on saving the smart TV, see my Weekly Update at GigaOM Pro (subscription required).