Disintermediation and Convergence Update – Video
The other day Tivo announced that it had created software to allow Internet Video on Television. The expected convergence of video, TV and the Internet is now in full force. As I wrote in an earlier post about Appleâ€™s announcement of iTV, everything is converging onto the big flat screen in the living room. Channel surfing between ESPN, CNN, YouTube and iFilm while sitting on your living room couch will soon be an experience for many. So the reality of convergence, something spoken about as being in the future for the last ten years, is now upon us.
This development is just another example of disintermediation. The networks used to control what we saw on TV. They were joined by cable networks. Then we got the remote control in our hands and we controlled the viewing. Now, with Internet video coming to our living room we are in complete control of what we watch regardless of source. This also points to the continuing flow of economic power and control to the individual. We are not only choosing what we watch but also when and where we watch. We can use Tivo to watch our favorite shows whenever we want. We can download video to hand held devices to watch when and where we want. We can use Sling Box to watch programs even when we are half way around the world. We now live in a world of ultimate choice.
One remaining question is whether watching all those quirky videos from YouTube on big flat screen TVs will increase viewer ship or make us realize that they are best viewed on the small screens of our computers. But it is increasingly our choice to make.