How Many TV/Video Companies Are Needed Right Now?

One size still doesn’t fit all in television. Here’s another opinion from our friends overseas.

A U.K. study says so-called “over-the-top” TV services – Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Google, XboxLive andApple, for example – are, for the moment, complementary to established TV/video services coming from cable, satellite or telcos.

In this country, Netflix has 22-million plus monthly consumers, with Hulu and others reaching additional millions. More than 90% of the 115 million U TV households have access to cable, satellite or telco services.

Complementary? Face it. Some people – even in this economy – have mighty fine disposable incomes. Based on the fact that TV and media usage is still growing, those consumers believe there isn’t enough entertainment.

"While we expect OTT to become increasingly integral to the home video entertainment mix, there's little evidence yet of consumers dropping their pay-TV subscriptions in favor of purely operator-independent solutions," said a chief analyst of the report.



Sure they are a few brave souls who try to go it alone by just having broadband access to access Netflix, Hulu Plus and others.

Spending, say, $20 or so a month on Netflix and $50 for broadband access is less expensive than spending $100 or more on cable and $ on broadband. But if you are flush, what’s another $20 or even $30 a month for OTT services, anyway?

No matter. Most of the country – even in the face of an iffy economy – would rather keep what they assume to still be “traditional” TV.

Don’t worry about the cable companies. A growing piece of their business comes from broadband services –a hedge against mostly dwindling traditional video service revenues.

If that isn’t enough, here’s another possible saving fact for those companies, according to the U.K. study: “Although OTT TV services now more closely resemble those of their network-based competitors, they have a long way to go before they can match the quality and breadth of content of traditional pay-TV offerings."

So, it’s a complement, not a replacement. For now.

4 comments about "How Many TV/Video Companies Are Needed Right Now?".
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  1. Doug Garnett from Protonik, LLC, May 30, 2012 at 11:33 p.m.

    We have Hulu, AppleTV, and Netflix as well as Comcast. (I justify it because I'm in the TV biz and need to know what's going on.)

    Without question, Comcast delivers the best value - best programming and a fixed price. What's disconcerting is the massive size of potential COST for obtaining decent programming through these other services. None of them is enough. And some charge incrementally. If Comcast disappeared, we'd end up paying far more to get worse programming.

    So the UK study has it accurately. These other services aren't TV.

  2. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, May 31, 2012 at 10:24 a.m.

    Remember when the Internet was a complement to print news, not a replacement?

  3. Joe Q Bretz from One Pass Media, May 31, 2012 at 5:16 p.m.

    BETA / VHS / CD-DVD / (Don't forget LASERDISC!) - NOW DIGITAL "OTT" - Lets empower NOT only the owners of conent who have spent money on creating the content - but ALLOW them to DIRECT TO CONSUMER and more eyeballs = more money for everyone. Delivery methods are changing - and will continue to do so. Keep the pace- keep the change and we all win.

    Joe Q. Bretz
    The Digital Development Group (OTCBB) DIDG

  4. Doug Garnett from Protonik, LLC, May 31, 2012 at 7:01 p.m.

    Actually, Doug Ferguson, for me the internet still is a complement. Or maybe complement isn't the right word. Rather, the internet offers instant headline gratification and an archive if I want to search an archive.

    But what it can't replace (because it lacks the capacity) is the value of reading a thoughtfully gathered newspaper or magazine. Especially longer pieces and articles with integrated graphics. Attempting to read something long via internet drives me batty - far too much work.

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