The future of television

In his blog entitled “Questions, but landscape is changed forever” in The Australian on April 13, 2009, Mark Day writes:

If we look through the increasingly clouded questions surrounding the Rudd Government’s plans for a fibre-to-the-home high-speed broadband network, how it will be designed, who will build it, who will own it and what it will cost end users, one thing is crystal clear: this is a game-changer for media.

The $43 billion plan is a television killer.  When it is built it will consign the Packer era of TV to the dustbin of history.  Our future TV menu depends on new technologies and new paradigms.

Existing separate platforms for free-to-air television, cable or satellite systems and telephony – fixed or mobile – will merge in devices using internet protocol.  Most television sets sold by 2015 will have inbuilt internet connection capacity, which, when connected to large pipes, will become an alternative method of distribution.  This changes the nature of TV from a one-to-many one-way broadcast delivery system to a one-to-one, two-way system.

This is pretty profound stuff.  Did you read that correctly?  Possibly within six years most televisions will have excellent Internet access capability.  They are already being sold.  Here in Australia, the ABC and SBS are already putting numerous programs as “video on demand” through the Internet once they have been broadcast.  The future is now, and there is clearly no going back.  More on this topic to come.

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