Open Source for TV – Does Canonical Hold The Key?

There has been quite a few initiatives around the Open Source aspect for Software in the Digital TV domain. Open Source is not Standardisation but in effect it is, if it becomes ubiquitous.

The lowest common denominator for the software is a decent OS stack and Engine. Canonical has the foundation upon which to build an Open Source model for the TV industry. Will ‘people’ allow that to happen? That all depends on the age old problem of ‘politics’.

Target Advertising – AD BLOCKER!

If you use ONLY targeted advertising gauged to a persons preferences, likes, dislikes and viewing or surfing habits you will kill advertising.

There has to be a blend of old traditional brain washing and targeted.

If I have purchased a Floor Polisher I dont need targeted Floor Polisher ads…you all say wax, wax, wax – yes perhaps; if I used wax that is! What if I buy for someone else…I dont need the wax the other person does – how do you know I purchased – the advertisers DON’T – there is another flaw!

I recently looked at a vintage Mercedes Minibus and now I get Mercedes trying to entice me into buying or testing a new expensive Mercedes- Irrelevant, annoying and a waste of Digital Marketing time, effort and money. Citroen is doing the same…the van I bought (in a breakers yard) for cash cost 1,500 Euros…nobody in ‘advertising land’ can ever know that…get my point?

Now I want to surf for something where the follow-up is less annoying but I can’t think of anything except an ‘Ad Blocker’ Software.

Broadcasters and Operators can gain HUGE Savings in CAPEX and OPEX with Companion Screen Interactivity

Companion Screen TV


This is one of the best articles I have read on the trials and tribulations of the 2nd Screen-Companion Screen and their role in Television interactivity.  As you might know I am a confirmed Interactive TV enthusiast, having been in this industry sector since its very early days.   The main dificulty in Interactive TV has always been the ROI.  How do you make money at it?   For the Broadcaster and Operator it is fast becoming more and more clear, but they have to change their thinking with respect to this area of Television and embrace a change in direction.  Why?  Cost Saving without cutting head-count, service reduction can be achieved and an actual revenue generating service can be implemented.  This makes sense for the long term financial health of teh Broadcasters & Operators.   Companion Screen Interactivity (SaaS based) is a natural CAPEX/OPEX ‘cost-saving’ exercise. We know that Embedded Middleware in STBs and TVs is a very costly exercise for advanced services and interactivity.  It is costly to License – Implement – Test – Run a Back Office and Pay to have Applications developed.  It needs constant Software Support and there are, in the main, run-time costs associated with most Middleware systems.   It is fragmented!   For the Broadcaster/Operator Interactive TV OPEX (SaaS model) can be amortised against the TV-Everywhere/Catch-Up Services Infrastructure already in place.  It makes sense to move to a SaaS based service as the Companion Screens are bought by the Consumer not by the Broadcaster/Operator.   STBs and TVs can also be cost reduced as they will require less intelligence.  Apps are/can be/will be downloaded for free.  Advertisers, Programme makers and the Channels can exploit this synchronised, always connected 2nd Screen in the home.    There may well be dedicated TV+Companion Screen sales at CE level in the future.  Although this will take time to evolve as a market I believe it is a natural path for Interactive Services.   Please read the Article linked below to get a good overview of the already fragmented market, the dificult marriage of many players and the reluctance of the Broadcasters/Operators who have not seen the obvious route they should be taking.

Tivo Enters Gilette v Wilkinson Sword Razorblade Race (With Tuners)

Th Madness of TV …5 Tuners and 2 Terrabytes of storage – Watch 1 programme while recording 4 others – store 300Hours of TV in HD (WHY?) … There is not enough time to watch it all and live your normal life!

Comment to “Blog Maveric” Post on TV Use in Life…

I think that this is absolutely a correct assessment of our world and our lives that are swamped by TV and all things that people think we should be doing in TV! It is a realistic reflection and observation of the following: Marc is a “Humanist” in a Technological world not a Technologist in Humanity: Technologists are creating things they think we want because they can not because it is required. I hate it when technologists say “It is what the Consumer wants”…most of them have never been a real consumer or know any real consumers. I have blogged this at WordPress (TVANGELIST) covering the aspect of TV consumption and use amongst the differing age groups many moons ago. I am in Europe and see a whole different set of more complex dynamics than the USA with fragmentation with respect to language and a myriad of different rules per country.

When I work I do not consume TV at work although I am in the TV business. When I travel I do not consume TV other then when I get to put my feet up in a hotel and I am not allowed to put Movies on my Hotel Tab. CNN and BBC seems to get the most of my attention…If I am not at the bar watching a football match or drinking with colleagues. Or emailing because I am out of time-zone sync. When I get home I have to kiss the wife, hug the kids, get re-settled into my family life which as Marc says results in the TV only being available to chill at the end of the evening. The PVR is full, AppleTV is available, Blu-ray is available, I have DVD and Video-Cassettes available. I have IPTV available from a Telco. Now I have mobile Handheld video and and iPhone, PC access via my MediaCentre…But I have little or no time to consume or at least little or no time to be searching the “world” for a show that I and my spouse might like that moment in time….

My streaming Internet Radio gives me a variety and selection process that is built by “someone else” creating a playlist…just like TV gave me a TV line-up…

My Children are 26,20,7 & 4 – So I get to see a wide spectrum of use and I once again claim that I concur with the article