The topic of replacing pay television services (cable, satellite) with web video comes up much more frequently these days as online content proliferates and given the economic downturn – folks are looking for ways to conserve. Having sampled just about every web service and video box, I recently weighed in at MultiChannel News:
Dave Zatz, a blogger who writes about the TV industry and entertainment technologies, said Internet video is often of poorer quality and less reliable than cable or satellite services. “While there are many newer options, I’d say they still aren’t ideal in replicating the couch-based experience,” he said. “Yet.”
While I know several who have indeed gone down the web video path, we’re nowhere near mass market adoption. Dumping pay television may accelerate but, for most, online content remains a supplement not a replacement. There’s just too many compromises. Getting content to and accessing it on the television remains a challenge for the mainstream, selections are unpredictable, quality is often low resolution, and there’s a large segment of news and sports junkies who are largely left out in the cold. That’s not to say we aren’t moving in this direction, but we’re clearly not there yet. (And for the last few years I’ve found Netflix-ing television shows to be the most enjoyable way to watch TV – entire seasons in a few days or weeks, commercial free, and without worry of mid-season cancellation.)
Now, having said that, the ZNF readership is clearly more tech savvy than most. So share in the comments the ways in which you’re getting online video to the television and if it has or will lead you to dump pay TV.