Canvas-HbbTV-TV Everywhere – Still Does NOT “kill off” FREE OTT Content Access

Canvas is supposed to solve a BBC BUSINESS issue which is the Re-Purposing and Re-authoring COST…It has to look at technology and there lies the issue – which Codec, which DRM…Can you truly Standardise OTT which is really VOD. The BBC is supposed to deliver FTA Content not govern what technology the wider world should use because it suits their needs. But they have a right to fix their issues. The DVB Consortium has been successfully doing standards that fix these kind of issues since its inception…as have many other Specification and Standards Fora…However this problem is probably far too complex for anyone to solve considering the technology mix available. Revenue increas and protection is important to the TV Business. So business models should come first not technology.

HbbTV is looking at a different philosophy and not strictly related to standardising OTT: It is for a PAN EUROPEAN RETAIL Television as that cannot be achieved in the present fragmented world of EMEA. So it is being built from the Internet Browser backwards (as Internet is considered the common to all of Europe ubiquitous part). There are two camps: The Broadcasters believe the Broadband part of the acronym is their 2nd Pipe to the TV or STB for them to exploit. However the 2nd Camp recently unmasked: A CE manufacturer and supporter of HbbTV told the Spanish Broadcasters publicly (in my presence) that they would have to compete with them for Content? The CE-Manufactures are all building Web-Portals and of course have to put Tuners in the TV (to staisfy the Broadcasters Broadcast part of the Acronym) as the connection to the Broadband is not Mandatory and they cannot put a TV into the market that cannot receive TV Signals….So can you watch French Broadcaster OTT content on an HbbTV enabled TV which is sitting in Germany – NO. Broadcaster Content is GEO-Locked so the only content will be any FREE or PIRATED OTT Content available on the Internet and that is what the Broadcasters and PayTV Operators do not want to see happen. This is a half baked Technical solution for indivisual Digital Island business issues. Who is protecting who’s revenues here? Seems like a fight between CE manufacturers and Broadcasters for eyeballs and the wallet.

TV Everywhere: A TECHNOLGY answer for Cable that does not solve the BUSINESS issue of Free OTT Content on the Broadband Pipe. It is an attempt to protect Cable TV Revenues.

All will have technical merit but not one of them will solve the “Free Content” issue and this problem will rage on until there is no decent Free content left worth looking at (no money to pay to have it created). Then of course there there are still Public Service Broadcasters taking Mandatory License Fess to dictate what and where and how we watch their brand of Content. So PSB’s and OTA/OTT might be relevant in the long term…we will all live to see the day this is all cleared up. I doubt it!

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