I recently attended a TV Everywhere session where there was a discussion on the evolution of the Television and Video industry with the advent of IPTV and Mobile access devices.
Clearly, TV Everywhere is a a huge trend and there are many factors driving this trend :
Today one sees DSL and Cable Modems have replaced the erstwhile Dial-ups. The 312 KBPS+ bandwidth running upto 50 MBPS for high end Cable modems in advanced economies (speeds in India top out at 1.5 to 3 MBPS etc for most providers) is enabling the ability to access high-speed graphics, video and gaming content from home and work computers.
Firms like Netflix in the US and Canada have figured out compelling business models to stream movies over the internet and are threatning the traditional movie rental business and regular cable television.
India’s broadband penetration rate is woefully small and speeds are still on low end of the spectrum, so Live TV Streaming in India is still a very niche industry. However with the expected surge in internet penetration expected over the next decade (some estimates put India’s internet penetration at 30% households in next few years), the IPTV and online TV streaming is expected to surge. Firms like seventymm.com which have led the online DVD rental business in India (India’s Netflix) will likely evolve into movie streaming firms as India’s broadband penetration takes hold, similar to what Netflix has done in the United States.
- Mobile Connectivity
Broadband sticks and Laptop connect cards (offered by most carriers) enable the laptops and tablets to be wirelessly connected over a reasonably fast GPRS/UMTS/3G network – with the advent of 3G in India, this pattern is sure to accelerate.
Consumers today are demanding YouTube and Cricket streaming video from their laptops, smartphones and tablets. Content providers and distributors have to oblige if they hope to keep these consumers engaged and commercially viable.
For India, Mobile is specially important as it has close to 800 million Mobile Subscribers already. Granted that more than 90% of these are carrying feature phones and using the 2G/2.5G networks, smartphone penetration rate is accelerating and wireless tablets are being introduced as well by a variety of handset firms. Between the smartphones, tablets and 3G, one is looking at increasing Mobile Video and TV access over the airwaves in the coming years.
- Consumer behaviour
As mentioned above, Consumer is the King. With proliferation of devices around the home and on the go, plus busy urban lifestyles, consumers are demanding DVR recording capabilities as well as anywhere, anytime access to their favorite programs. A common trend in many households, which have acquired the new tablets like iPad, is that as soon as the first tablet arrives, members of the household including parents and kids make a grab for it and want to curl up in the bed with their favorite channels on YouTube, Netflix or other streaming services.
TV Everywhere is a developing trend and is being demanded by the consumer. Entertainment and Media industry are happy to oblige – to drive new revenue growth and keep the customers engaged with the brands.
What are the prominent TV and Video Streaming services in India :
- CNN-IBN Live : TV Portal as well as Live TV
- NDTV 24×7 : TV Portal as well as Live TV
- In.com : Has a Video Social Network (not live streaming generally)
- CNBC TV18 / moneycontrol.com : Business news streaming
- ESPNStar.com : Video Portal (not live streaming) – has lot of Cricket coverage for World Cup and IPL
- YouTube / Indiatimes.com : streaming ICC World Cup as well as IPL cricket matches
- Nautanki.tv : currently it’s website is not accessible (so not clear on it’s status)
April 16th, 2011