I Just Want a Smart TV, not a Dumb Analysis

written by: Richard Kastelein

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I Just Want A Dumb TV - I can't believe this headline out of Gizmodo Australia. Gizmodo, by Gawker Media is one of the world's most visible and successful blog-oriented media companies.

Where do I start? As someone who actually happily owns a connected TV (though confessedly, my seven and nine year old daughters use it more than me - cue Justin Bieber videos on Youtube App), I just feel this piece held some assumptions that are not validated in any way by easily available data that's out there. Let me take some points from the article which can be seen here.

A TV is a huge purchase.

No it's not.

TV replacement cycles are sinking as fast as the pricing. I paid more for my desktop than my Samsung Connected TV.

Not to mention as they continue to come down in price (and they will as the CE manufacturers generate more revenue via connected TV) we will simply put more of them in our houses. Hell, why not put one in the bathroom? Or in every room in the house.

MIT Media Lab founder Nicholas Negroponte was right. TV Everywhere includes the idea that all kinds of surfaces are likely to become screens in the future. I imagine, like in Europe and the US, the average Australian household had close to three TVs already. All easily replaceable.

...with a shitty App Store that probably won’t exist in two years

Hulu, Comcast, Time Warner Cable are entering the Samsung App Store which has over 300 Apps in it and 1.5 million downloads. And Samsung is giving away over 1.5 million dollars in TV apps contests in Europe, the US and Korea.

I don't think it's going to be dead in two years.

Highly unlikely. The fact is, none of the stores will die because the race for VOD TV Apps is pushing content companies and broadcasters to every platform. Independent content creators will be next. Not to mention gaming, weather, Google Earth and whatever else you can think of - that is cool on an HD screen and a ten foot experience.  

CE manufacturers are going to disrupt the traditional TV industry as much as P2P did to music - if not more - as the TV builders build a bridge right to the living rooms and kill scarcity.

Hopefully Darwin will win and one platform will help standardize the evolving TV/Web convergence (HTML 5 please), but for now - everyone is making a play at peeling away at the 100 billion euro floating around TV Advertising globally by disrupting the current value chain.

Let set top boxes or Blu-ray players or Apple TVs take care of all the amazing connectivity...

I don't know about you, but the last think I want in my living room is another box. I want less boxes. I am inundated with boxes and remotes and wires and cables and clutter...

It's like trying to stuff 8 tracks (anyone remember those?) in the glovebox of a car back in the 70s.

Spend money on what you know you’ll still want in a few years—a good screen...

Umm... my Connected TV came with their best LCD technology Samsung had (I did not want LED).

Park Associates:

Consumer desire for on-demand and online video content will drive sales of Internet-connectable TV devices to reach nearly 350 million units worldwide by 2015, setting the stage for intense competition in app development, according to a new report from Parks Associates.

And by 2015, over 90 percent of all TVs produced will be internet enabled anyway (yes, that is a fact, Google it). Your suggestion is as intelligent as  telling people to go out and buy a CD player with a CD rack for their living room.

And TV manufacturers: Don’t just make more dumb TVs. Make them dumber.

And Gizmodo Australia: Don't print dumb articles.

About the Author

Richard Kastelein
Founder of The Hackfest, publisher of TV App Market and global expert on Media & TV innovation, Kastelein is an award winning publisher and futurist. He has guest lectured at MIT Media Lab, University of Cologne, sat on media convergence panel at 2nd EU Digital Assembly in Brussels, and worked with broadcasters such as the BBC, NPO, RTL (DE and NL), Eurosport, NBCU, C4, ITV, Seven Network and others on media convergence strategy - Social TV, OTT, DLNA and 2nd Screen etc.

He is a Fellow of the UK Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and UK Royal Television Society (RTS) member.

Kastelein has spoken (& speaking) on the future of media & TV in Amsterdam, Belfast, Berlin, Brussels, Brighton, Copenhagen, Cannes, Cologne, Curacao, Frankfurt, Hollywood, Hilversum, Geneva, Groningen (TEDx), Kuala Lumpur, London, Las Vegas, Leipzig, Madrid, Melbourne, NYC, Rio, Sheffield, San Francisco, San Jose, Sydney, Tallinn, Vienna, Zurich...

He's been on advisory boards of TEDx Istanbul, SMWF UK, Apps World, and judged & AIB awards, Social TV Awards Hollywood, TV Connect & IPTV Awards.

A versatilist & autodidact, his leadership ability, divergent and synthetic thinking skills evolved from sailing the world 24000 miles+ offshore in his 20′s on sailboats under 12m.

He spent 10 years in the Caribbean media & boating industry as a professional sailor before returning to Europe, to Holland.

A Creative Technologist and Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Metis) his career began in the Canadian Native Press and is now a columnist for The Association for International Broadcasting and writes for Wired, The Guardian & Virgin. His writings have been translated into Polish, German and French. 

One of Kastelein's TV formats was optioned by Sony Pictures Television in 2012. 

Currently involved in a number of startups including publishing TV App Market online, The Hackfest and Tripsearch TV. As CSO for Worldticketshop he helped build a $100m company.

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