When it comes to consumable media, be it TV, Radio, Music, Internet, or whatever I want it to be free. In some cases I am willing to view advertisements in exchange for access to this media. Much like traditional TV and Radio, the Internet Media will be ad-supported “free”. What’s even better is the amount of content that will be available. Past seasons of your favorite shows, news broadcasts, and any number of entertainment options will be archived and available on demand. The Internet will become the new broadcast medium of choice in the future. IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) is just starting to take off. Services like Joost, VeohTV, Democracy Player, and other providers are starting to offer the same quality of content you can get with paid basic cable and on-demand services.
I say “Give me the free media with some ads, its cool”. Let me download free mp3s with a 5-10 second advertisement at the end, or even an advertisement for the album art. Give me some commercials when I’m streaming internet television and just make sure it’s quality content. If I don’t want the advertisements I will gladly purchase your product. However the flip side to that is I do not want advertisements in the media I pay for. I recently canceled my digital cable television account. I got sick of paying for 12 hours worth of infomercials and paid-advertising programs. Digital cable was costing me over $100 each month. Cable TV is going to lose to Internet TV. I have been consuming “free” legal media on the internet for the past several months. Quality content is starting to be shown all over the internet, with huge media companies licensing their shows to be shown online.
I’ve been beta testing Joost for the last few months. (If you would like an invite to the Joost Beta, leave a comment and I will do what I can.) Joost has improved quickly in its short run, signing the likes of Paramount, CNN, Comedy Central, Adult Swim, and more for channels of content. The advertising is generally unobtrusive, but slightly repetitive but thats to be expected in a beta with limited advertisers. There is word that Joost is developing an embedded platform for a set-top type box. Expect to see devices in the future that pull content from the internet to display on your HDTV. The line between TV and computer will only blur more. IPTV could hit the Sony PS3, Microsoft Xbox 360, or Nintendo Wii through updates in the future. Game consoles are already in millions of homes worldwide, and could evolve into content delivery systems as well as gaming systems.
Portable media is also the future. As the wireless networks get better and the devices more sophisticated, people will be able to access media anywhere in the world, on demand. The iPhone and Orb for cell phones is just scratching the surface of mobile digital media. The next few years will be interesting indeed. I can’t wait until all of the major media networks release their new programs simultaneously on the internet as well as broadcast television.