Monday, April 23, 2012

Is NimbleTV The Next Generation Slingbox For TV Everywhere

There's a new service being talked about that could bring true TV Everywhere to the consumer, across any device, and without a set top box.  The service, NimbleTV, says on its website that they work with both content providers and content producers to accomplish that task.  To me, that means that the cost of the service is an additional fee to take your cable, satellite, or telco line-up and access it from the cloud.

In today's New York Times, NimbleTV is the next generation of Slingbox, as labeled by its former executive, Jason Hirschhorn.  "NimbleTV says it has the same functionality as a Slingbox and DVR, but without the actual boxes". But will the content distributors and producers accept this use of their product without some incremental payoff.  And like anything, those costs will only increase the total costs for content to the consumer.

Consumers do want TV Everywhere; they want the flexibility, the variety, and the access, so that content follows them and not the other way around.  But what they don't want is the cost.  Consumers are seeking ways to lower their bills, not raise them.  It is why consumers are flocking to You Tube, Netflix, and Hulu as lower cost alternatives that also give them mobility.  For those currently subscribing to cable, they want the added value of TV Everywhere, but not the added costs.  For them, their cable bill needs more value attached to it to accept the high costs of their cable bills.  Higher rates will only cause further cord cutting to these OTT alternatives.

Can NimbleTV find success?  If embraced by cable operators and networks, yes; but as they have yet to embrace Slingbox, I doubt they will find this next player a friend either.