TV Brand Soup

From Wikipedia:

Smart TV, which is also sometimes referred to as “Connected TV” or “Hybrid TV”, (not to be confused with IPTV,  Internet TV or Web TV).

Well that cleared that up.  With the advent of YouView (is it the future of Freeview?)  We thought we should reflect on the chaos the TV industry is creating around brands and product definitions.

We are the industry that can’t decide whether to call a hard disk based recorder a DTR, DVR, or PVR. We were told that a DVR was just a recorder, but a PVR (as in ‘personal video recorder’) is a different thing – a personalised service.  Where does that leave DTR? (As favoured by Thinkbox).  If we can’t agree on a name for the most disruptive technology to hit our industry in 30 years, how can we expect consumers to make sense of TV now that the internet is arriving.  Other areas of confusion:

How about ‘catch up’.  It is clearly on-demand but is it part of  ‘On-Demand’ or not?  Some menus tell you it is, some tell you that its separate (as in Virgin Tivo –  Catch Up  and On-Demand).  Does it matter, do we care?

What about the word ‘live’.  We talk about consumers watching ‘live’ but do we mean a show that is actually being created live, while we watch it, or just the consumer watching it off a broadcast stream, without recording or pausing it? How about live pause?  Does it only work on ‘live’ shows?

Which brings us back to YouView?  We tried to describe YouView to a group of consumers without using the word Freeview.  Its like trying to eat a fruit pastel without chewing!  Is YouView a Freeview based product or a DTT based product (or is that the same thing)?  Do consumers even know what DTT is? Which brings us to the interesting question of whether the YouView marketers will mention Freeview in their pitch?  If yes, are they allowed to say ‘its the future of Freeview‘ or would the Freeview people sue?  How will YouView define itself against the Smart devices? ?  If YouView does all the same things as my Samsung SmartTV, then is YouView just Freeview Smart. But then what happens if Freeview manufacturers launch a Freeview Smart STB with a backwards EPG? (its in the D-Book after all).

As they used to say in the US comedy soap, called Soap:  Confused? You soon will be!

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