Verizon FiOS TV Headed To Roku & PS3?

Dave Zatz —  May 21, 2011

verizon-fios-roku

The GigaOm crew attended a FiOS TV briefing… where they received a demo of Verizon’s FlexView video-on-demand service running on a Roku streamer. I can’t say I’m surprised, as Verizon made their intentions to break free of the set-top box clear back at CES. In fact, they demo-ed live television on an iPad and Samsung Blu-ray player – telling me over 3 dozen consumer electronics devices were similarly hosting FiOS TV services in their labs.

Now if you look closely at the picture that the GigaOm crew snapped, you’ll notice what appears to be a Sony PS3 on the left. Interestingly, Verizon had an unidentified gaming console locked within a cabinet in Vegas also running FiOS. Throw in news of Fox and Disney content headed to a gaming console, via a television subscription partner, and I’d say mystery solved.

What excites GigaOm is the possibility of Verizon going over the top (OTT) with a nationwide on demand service. But that’s been done. What fires us up is television as an app. A path DirecTV looks to be similarly following with their RVU trials. And it’s all sorta like AllVid. But without the FCC’s intervention.

14 responses to Verizon FiOS TV Headed To Roku & PS3?

  1. That. Is. Awesome.

    I know Verizon is pushing the envelope in the TV/video services space. Hopefully some of the advance features will be available soon!

  2. “And it’s all sorta like AllVid. But without the FCC’s intervention.”

    Let’s not get carried away here. One small MSO (with a best-in-biz underlying infrastructure), perhaps allowing some of their own services to be used w/out their STB ain’t AllVid…

  3. Cool. I want to be able to watch live football games on my PS3. Wonder if they will make consoles work like a DVR.

  4. Chucky – Well, RVU seems to be an attempt at a standard and potentially broader than DirecTV. CableCARD took something like 10 years to make it mainstream, so I wouldn’t count on a FCC AllVid mandate advancing the cause any time soon…

  5. Sounds good, but I wonder, are they going to charge me an extra monthly fee per connected device?

  6. Any VOD-esque service would probably come with a free app, as they’d want you to rent movies or television content. If they’re streaming live television, in addition to recorded content from other DVRs in the house, I could see them charging something similar to an AO fee. For frame of reference, I think my CableCARD rental/access runs $4/mo.

    And while you’re here wmcbrine… any interesting Reversi log entries lately? :)

  7. wmcbrine in da house!

    “Sounds good, but I wonder, are they going to charge me an extra monthly fee per connected device?”

    I’d somewhat doubt it. The FIOS pricing scheme doesn’t seem structured that way. But we shall see…

  8. No way man, the promise AllVid is the promise of getting to choose your software. This and rvu are more like true2way, the same crapy ui on a different box. I’m not saying this isn’t better than what we have, just that it isn’t as good as I want.

    I want to chose my hardware and my software. The iPhone wouldn’t be the iPhone if it was running Andriod.

  9. Hey Dave, since fios TV’s quality is top notch, what kind of quality do you think something like this app would be?

  10. Ben, I agree it’s not as good as you want. But AllVid ain’t going to happen in 2011 or 2012. And with projects like these, combined with Comcast’s backchannel VOD for TiVo, the MSOs will lobby the FCC to stay out of it as they are providing service to other hardware.

    Marcus, that’s a good question and I don’t know. I assume there may be some compromises based on destination platform capabilities and perhaps conservation of overhead. Guess we’ll have to wait and see. Ben should have asked them that at CES. ;)

  11. They seem to have quit visiting Reversi after my last thread about it, I’m sorry to say.

  12. If they stream live TV, how are they going to limit the channels to your subscription package?

  13. Dave,

    I agree that an app approach for access to both VOD and live TV is far more interesting. Its not like they’re going to let me stream TV shows for free since I subscribe to them on Comcast already. I assume they just want to sell me movies. Which are mostly the same movies I can already get from Amazon on my Tivo, or on my Apple TV. Etc.

    Interesting since they focused in their talks on the OTT angle, since it seems harder and less interesting. Obviously they’ve got to transcode the content to lower bit rates using a variety of ABR schemes to address the different devices. In the home they could just pass along the existing high-bandwidth stream, which if I’m going to watch this stuff on my TV is what I want anyway.

    Interesting stuff nevertheless, but yes I’d prefer AllVid too. Open=documented APIs or open network interfaces. Let me just buy the device I want with the UI I want to access your content.

  14. Hmm… this is good for all the FIOS customers, but not sure why anyone else would be excited. There are already plenty of VOD choices out there (VUDU, Amazon, Apple, PlayStation and Xbox services, etc.).

    Am I missing anything?