Archive for the ‘video’ Category
Social media is extremely powerful and scalable. It leverages the crowds to spur rapid growth. However, the very mechanism that enables this growth is often exploited in a counterproductive manner via cheating and “gaming”.
Without even testing Flickr video yet, I can tell you why YouTube shouldn’t be worried about the industry’s newest entrant. When you think YouTube, you think video. When you think Flickr, you think photo. These well-known associations are embedded in the minds of users. A huge change in perception would be needed and I just don’t see this happening.
[Direction of the Web] – It is unclear to me where the Web is headed in the very near future. The big guys (Google, Yahoo, Microsoft) seem to be a bit lost. In addition, no clear trends or “hot spaces” are emerging. Social networking seems to have cooled down a bit and micro-blogging, though still rising in popularity, seems to be taking a breather.
A few categories are showing promise, but lacking overall direction. These include online video, wikis, podcasting, and personal finances (to name a few). It seems that interest in these areas is present as many players continue to enter the game. Having said that, no-one seems to know how each space will play out. Everyone is providing their own take on the situation, choosing a different audience, vertical, or worse yet, generalizing.
What I’m surprised about is the lack of focus around local. I truly believe this to be the most lucrative niche by far. After all, it relates to real people – think Craigslist or YellowPages. Let’s be honest with ourselves – blog aggregators and social bookmarking sites preach the choir.
With local, a revenue model is not only achievable, but feasible. It’s also sustainable as people can relate (and understand) the business model. Whether income is generated via targeted advertising or premium directory placement, local is an area that needs to be explored more thoroughly.
What do you see in the near-term future of the Web? What sectors will catch fire and which will fizzle out?
Today, NetFlix announced the launch of a new service that will limit its dependence on physical mail. The company plans to partner with numerous electronic manufacturers in a new initiative that will send movies from the Internet to your TV. An initial partnership with LG will get the ball rolling later this year. The service will be offered in HD and may include a limitation on the number of movies viewed per month.
Currently, NetFlix offers over 6,000 movies and television shows online for free, but this new service will extend beyond the PC to the TV. The company does acknowledge a threat from the video-on-demand space, but believes that such a system is incapable of reaching its full potential without the power of the web.
The company has ambitions to become the preeminent movie channel on all Internet-connected devices, including gaming systems, wireless devices, DVD players, and set top boxes.
I can understand the benefits of such a system for both the consumer and the company. It saves time, hassle, and money. I’m just not convinced that consumers will be rushing out to buy a NetFlix-enabled device. Having said that, I do think this a step in the right direction. However, the company will need to partner with as many electronic manufacturers as possible to really make this work. Furthermore, NetFlix will need to establish itself as the name in the space, as everyone from Apple to Amazon is jockeying for position.
As a side note, this looks like yet another hit to Blockbuster. The old-school video rental company has taken a butt-kicking over the past few years. The introduction of ‘no late fees’ did provide a bit of light, but only for the short term. It may only be a matter of time before…
What do you think of this move? Is it worthwhile or worthless?