Australian CMA Says Convergent Media Will Cause Fragmentation Of Audiences, With "Unknown Ramifications On Content Owners, Distributors, Broadcasters And Regulators"

written by: Richard Kastelein

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The Sydney Morning Herald in Australia is reporting that the TV revolution is sailing fast to the Antipodes as " onslaught of technology providers vie for a slice of the home entertainment market once dominated by television networks."

The battle for our eyes is being fought on several fronts, according to a study commissioned by the Australian Communications and Media Authority, which revealed that one in five Australians had already viewed full-length television programs over the internet with one in eight full-length films online. ISPs are working alongside various hardware and software partners to tie together packages that make it increasingly attractive to download movies, games and even favourite television shows via the internet.

Traditional TV networks have also been promoting 'catch-up' TV content which can be accessed online for those who missed the scheduled screening.

"With higher internet speeds and increasing bandwidth capacity, increasingly consumers are less restricted to viewing their favourite programs according to a predetermined schedule or on a single device, such as the family television," says ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman told SMH. "Already, we've seen television 'catch-up' services gathering popularity in Australian households."

According to article, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) says traditional content viewing services such as free-to-air and subscription broadcasting are still "the overwhelming backbone for video and television viewing in Australia" but it warns that the barrage of new content channels will increase the fragmentation of audiences, with "unknown ramifications on content owners, distributors, broadcasters and regulators".

Top contenders Down Under include Telstra's T box, FetchTV, Tivo, PlayTV, Foxtel by Xbox LIVE, and Google TV.

Hat tip to InShot at Twitter for the tip.


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