Sunday, November 06, 2011

The consolidation of channels

Over the last 4 months, I have been completely off television. I have not been missing much, as I catch on my favourite TV sops on the internet and that too break-free. That got me into considering a high-speed internet connection and a IPTv service. Majority of the FM transmission I receive is in Telugu, the local language. So even that is not a persistent entertainment option. So most of the time I am onto internet radio listening to the genres and playlists of my choice, 'social' favourites etc. In short, over the past few days, I have seen two prominent channels of entertainment/information being completely replaced by the internet. Since then the subject of consolidation of channels has been on my mind - it's basically about what the internet has done to the rest of the communication channels.
The internet in a single master stroke has replaced the television, radio, newspaper, telephone and snail mail.We have an option of enjoying all these services through a single communication channel - the Internet. With access to internet, most of us have already stopped writing letters. The day is not far (more so in my case), when we will be enjoying all these service exclusively through internet. Your mess of cables will be replaced by a single wireless router. No more DTH  antennae, no DVD players, no newspaper (and raddi!). We will just have one device in our homes which will entertain us, inform us and also help us stay connected. It's almost there! But then what is stopping us from such a revolution?
Primarily, the two elementary factors required for this revolution are lacking in substance:
  1. Bandwidth pricing: Its is just in the last 1 year that I have started hearing of 10 Mbps broadband lines for domestic use at affordable rates. Delivering large amount of audio-visuals over internet implies the need for higher bandwidth. Government regulation and private companies need to move towards a more liberal approach towards bandwidth allocation to subscriber. Once, the consumers start enjoying a high quality transmission, there are no limits to this channel.
  2. Content: I have written posts earlier on the importance of content. Though Internet has made it possible to bring every darn thing to the consumer, quality content is required on this channel. There are some companies like Rajashri Media in India who are aggressively getting into this space. However, given the capabilities of this channel, very little is done today.
I think in the next 2 to 3 years, we are going to get there.Be ready for a completely new experience.
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