Analyst Report: Connected consumer third-quarter 2012: analysis and outlook

Analysis

The third quarter saw many parts of the traditional media business in flux. New digital platforms that once had confined themselves to user-generated content began to invest in creating professional-quality content. At the same time, TV programmers began to wrestle with both the threat and the opportunity presented by second-screen and social-TV platforms. The period also saw the rollout of new device-based content ecosystems, red flags and red ink for traditional consumer electronics makers, and a resurgence of consumer purchases of movies.

More-detailed highlights from the quarter include:

  • The line between new media and old became harder to define as disseminators and distributors like Microsoft and Google started to create their own content.
  • Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Roku, and Google all made moves during the third quarter to beef up the content ecosystems that support their connected devices, a trend that could make life harder for stand-alone content services like Netflix and Pandora.
  • Sony, Panasonic, and Sharp posted their biggest losses ever in their most recent fiscal years, leading to credit downgrades and raising questions about whether traditional hardware companies can still compete in a business increasingly defined by software.
  • Major TV networks began to invest directly in second-screen app developers to hedge against allowing social TV to become an over-the- top means of monetizing the networks’ own audiences.
  • After abandoning movie purchasing in favor of on-demand rentals over the past few years, consumers began to show a bit more appetite for owning movies again.

This quarterly wrap-up discusses these developments as well as offers trends and topics to watch for the remainder of 2012 and beyond.

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. New media is now the media
  3. Services after sale
  4. The traditional consumer-electronics industry enters its twilight years
  5. Battle of the second screen
  6. Movie buyers stage a comeback
  7. Near-term outlook
  8. Key takeaways
  9. About Paul Sweeting
  10. About GigaOM Pro

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