It looks like Marissa Mayer has been making tentative enquiries:
“Sources said Mayer also had an extensive getting-to-know-you meeting, which was apparently not held at Hulu’s offices in Santa Monica, Calif., along with COO Henrique De Castro.”
Let’s hope those content deals with the networks aren’t expiring any time soon.
I am very interested to see whether this will be supported by both parties, and reported in broadcasters ratings press releases.
This week The Verge are running a large feature on the future of TV, and the war for distribution of content. Articles include reviews of current VOD hardware, often dragged down by patchy software, to visionary interviews by CEO’s claiming to want to democratise, but surely aiming to be the next Rupert Murdoch.
My thoughts are that nobody has cracked it yet, and I believe this is down to software engineers not being lovers of TV. When I watch a show on Apple TV, the show finishes and it takes me back to the synopses of the episode I just watched, instead of pushing me to the next ep, you realise this is software written by someone with no love for bingeing on TV for hours on end.
When you can’t actually navigate 4OD on a PS3 properly with the bluetooth remote, it reminds you that the person who coded the app never sat back and tried to watch two episodes of Peep Show in a row.
Even the idea of throwing youtube to your TV with the new app via airplay mirroring can’t be done for more than a few minutes without your iPhone reaching epic new temperature highs.
What I’m saying is that software engineers at the big players need a dose of reality. They need to sit down with the common man and observe his TV watching habits. They only need tweaking. The best interface I have come across is Netflix on a PS3. You get the basic information, if you don’t touch the remote it will keep loading up episode after episode, and it does what all good interfaces do, puts as few layers as possible between you and your favourite programs.
Stop trying to complicate things, more people will buy your product, and one day very soon we will look back at the quaint 30 year period where we all fitted satellites to the side of our houses to access 500 channels.
As a side note, I think there is enough interest in the future of television to start a dedicated website. What say you, Joshua Topolsky?
Don’t miss the War for TV on The Verge right now.
Ironically, it started with Apple removing their old, old Youtube app from the iPhone, in the hope of ridding Google and their information gathering ways from iOS.
The problem was, everybody immediately went to the app store and downloaded Google’s shiny new Youtube app, and if their experience was anything like mine discovered a whole new world of delights.
I subscribed to a few channels, added email notifications for when new shows have been uploaded to the feed. and I tell you, it really works. The way in which Google have funded some channels has allowed for some high quality, compelling content.
and that segues neatly into today’s news that ABC will be airing a show that started as a Youtube funded original production. Recipe Rehab is cooking show that will expand to 30 mins for broadcast.
Everyday Health Inc., which launched the healthy-cooking series “Recipe Rehab” in April on its YouTube “channel,” said it is making longer, 30-minute episodes of the show, which will appear on nearly all stations affiliated with Walt Disney Co.’s ABC.
Although Google will be losing the exclusivity of this show, they can be proud that their funding has led to a wider audience watching some quite niche content.
Microsoft have hired ex-CBS Television Studios president Nancy Temmel to run their new original production studio in LA. The Verge have the story:
In Microsoft’s press release, Tellem said that “The Xbox is already a consumer favorite, and we now have a tremendous opportunity to transform it into the center of all things entertainment — from games, music and fitness to news, sports, live events, television series and movies — so consumers have one destination for all their entertainment needs.”
Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Google and now Microsoft are all investing heavily in original content. If only two of these ventures succeed, the industry ramifications will be huge.