Thursday, April 15, 2010

NBC, Fox Team Up for Mobile Content Service

As we become a more mobile, untethered society, it is nice to know that our content will find us. "A consortium composed of some of the nation's biggest broadcasters -- including News Corp.'s Fox, NBC Universal, Gannett Broadcasting, Hearst Television, ION Television and Cox Media Group -- has struck a deal to create a joint venture to develop programming for mobile devices." Great for the networks to find perhaps another revenue stream for subscription to the same content as cable. Sad for the cable companies if we can learn how to move the mobile content around in our home so we can bypass cable. An opportunity for cable companies to enable TV Anywhere through the cable box, i.e. Slingbox. A loss if the cable companies aren't reacting and acting as leaders rather than followers.

I can only point to history to change the future. The cable companies are looking like AOL, once top of the mountain, but soon, a footnote to the future. When you are the leader you must continue to change as external and internal forces change. AOL did not react to changes in broadband and their dial up business and subscription revenue died. As mobility takes a stronger foothold, consumes are enjoying the opportunity to cut their cable cord. Before it becomes a problem, cable companies need to be the choice to offer TV Anywhere. Unless they do, cable companies will become simply a dumb pipe to the home.

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