Both for me. I get the idea of just having an internet connection and accessing content that way, but usually the good content you either have to wait for, or pay for (or use a potentially illegal source for). I've long thought that online content providers would replace cable TV, but IMO it's still just not there yet. Netflicks *almost* made it, but then they lost a ton of their licenses and their content is kinda meh now.
I suspect that's going to be a problem for some time. Cable companies (or equivalent) can leverage better terms for bundling of content to end users. Content generators (networks) will tend to maintain sites with some of their stuff on it, but it's usually not available right away. Anyone legally providing that content has to be licensed to do so, which costs money. They're going to expect to be able to charge for their content to the consumers, which means they have to add some value along the way. Large scale bundling is how cable makes this work financially, and presumably an internet content provider would have to bundle in some way, but to beat the cable guys, they have to provide options for customers. So far, I really haven't seen this happen. You either subscribe to the service, or you don't, and you get all that they have, or nothing. Which means that the "all they have" tends to be broad and limited at the same time (see: netflicks/hulu/etc).
I'd like to see genre based content options. Let me pay a few bucks a month for their "scfi" package, or "action movies", or whatever. Make broad bundles more expensive and narrow ones less so. Allow me to go all the way to micro transactions for a single episode or film if I want. I think once you build the infrastructure for that kind of delivery to customers, you'll start seeing more people move to that model. So far, that hasn't happened though. Lots of technical and legal obstacles to over come, not to mention lots of uncertainty in terms of revenue stream. It's safer to just provide a broad and generic set of content and get customers that way. So that's what we've seen so far.
Until something like that becomes available via online provider, I'll stick with cable. Cable actually provides that (to a degree). You end out paying for a ton of channels you don't care about, but you do get to pick channel bundles (sorta), and have access to both free and pay on-demand stuff. So ironically, the cable companies have actually done most of the stuff that I had assumed internet companies would more easily be able to do. I think the online only folks could do it better though. They don't have the requirement to provide "basic cable", nor an historical model that bundles large amounts of channels so as to subsidize content. An online provider could simply offer narrow pay options at lower cost for what cable companies today charge as "premium" or "extended" cable options. At least theoretically.
Edited, Sep 3rd 2013 3:29pm by gbaji
King Nobby wrote:
More words please