The Future of TV is Now: Streaming Forum Preview

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Despite the growth of online video, traditional broadcast still rules. In fact, according to Nielsen, of the 5.5 hours of video watched by the average consumer, only an hour of that is online. But it's growing. Five years ago, it may have just been 10 minutes a day. To be at an hour demonstrates that something profound is happening in the way we consume video. It's shifting away from the family room couch and dedicated, linear programming to binge watching wherever there's an Internet connection. I can easily predict that the amount of online video consumed each day is only going to get larger, an idea that is supported by Cisco's analysis of internet traffic—by 2020 over 70 percent will be video.

We can't live in denial any longer. There is a transition happening from linear broadcast to online streaming, a transition that is driven by consumer demand to be able to watch traditional television content on other devices. Smartphones. Tablets. Laptops. Apple TV. Roku. And the only way to get that video content to those devices is by using the internet. So incumbent broadcasters like Sky, Channel 4, BBC, and others are scrambling to change to meet these new consumer demands, driven also by intense competition from a new breed of "broadcasters" purpose-built for internet delivery (Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, etc.).

What does this future of television look like? Well, surprisingly enough, it's not something culled from the pages of a science fiction classic. It's actually right in front of us…right now. Imagine an experience where traditional TV is merged with online sources, where content discovery is based on analysis of consumer behavior, where the quality of what we watch online is equal to (or surpasses) that of what we can watch via broadcast. All of the technologies to enable this future are here today, and cutting-edge companies like Comcast, Sky, Telstra, and Liberty Global are putting them together to create the new television experience.

Join me in London at the Streaming Forum on 28 February-March 1, where I'll discuss this future of television, the pieces that need to be assembled to make it happen, and what the experience might look like. Hope to see you there!

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