OnScreen Summit: TV Everywhere Not Quite There
Netflix, iTunes thriving because interface is facile
By Michael Malone -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/6/2012 1:02:16 PM
"One of the biggest challenges [for users] is, where is it, how do I get it?" said John Pascarelli, executive VP of operations at Mediacom, singling out Netflix and iTunes for an intuitive interface.
Renee Plato, senior VP of digital distribution, Univision Communications, simply said the process for users is "wack."
The panelists are also wrestling with increased audience fragmentation, and the challenge of making their content stick amidst the myriad choices available to users. "There's way more fragmentation and way more distraction and it's way more difficult for advertisers to hold onto eyeballs," said Peter Low, president and CEO, Ensequence.
Univision aims to stand out for users on the go with its UVideos initiative, which Plato described as "our TV Everywhere offering," with social media integrated into the content mix.
Such products may not crank out substantial revenue, but are the cost of doing business for media entities, she said. "We're doing it as a value add and to strengthen the value of the product we offer our MVPD partners," said Plato.
Failing to connect with the iPad/smartphone crowd is to miss out on an increasing chunk of the viewing public, agreed the panelists. "The living room on the go is the new reality," said Jeremy Helfand, VP of video monetization at Adobe.
The challenges of content storage, added Jeremy Morrison, VP, sales engineering at Avail-TVN, are increasingly an issue for operators. "We see it evolving to more cloud-based storage," he said.
The challenges of improving users' access to TV Everywhere, including getting distributors to agree on a standard authentication gateway, may be surmountable. While Canoe Ventures shuttered its interactive TV business earlier this year, Low said its technology platform worked -- for cable, satellite, telco, mobile and connected TV alike. "There is a way to pull all this together," Low said.
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