Yesterday Apple made the announcement. They are releasing a new iPod. This one does video.
Tonight at dinner one of my co-workers wondered who would want it? Who would use it? Simply – why?
No one knows the answer, of course. But everyone knows there is going to be some sort of paradigm shift in how video gets distributed.
It’s probably the theater owners who are most worried in the short term. There have been rumblings about releasing DVDs the same day a movie goes into theatrical release. As it is, the window between the two releases has been shortened greatly over the last few years.
Next to be worried will be TV stations. In the short term this isn’t as much of a threat to us as theaters.
Having mobile video is one thing. Getting live or fresh content to it quickly is another. And, though that hurdle will be cleared at some point, not yet… certainly not cheaply yet.
With the iPod announcement came word that shows like Desperate Housewives would be made available for the iPod the day after network airing, sans commercials, and for $2¹.
Distributing programs via television stations is an expensive proposition for the TV networks. I suppose if they could ditch us, they would today. Right now, we’re the only way they can get tonnage. Our local programming brings masses of people to their national programming. Individual cable channels don’t even come close.
That might not always be the case, but it is now.
Years ago, radio was primarily local stations playing network programming. As things changed, some radio stations flourished. Others died. It all depends on signal (now cable coverage) and the aggressiveness of the ownership in protecting their turf.
I’d like to think I work for aggressive owners.
¹ – It’s really $1.99… and $1.99 is really $2. So shoot me.