Steve Gibbard wrote:
> Maybe I just don't spend enough time around the "leave the TV on all day"
> demographic. Is that a realistic number? Is there something bigger than
> HDTV video that ATT expects people to start downloading?
I would not be surprised if many households watch more than 10hrs of TV
per day. My trusty old series 2 TiVo often records 5-8hrs of TV per day,
even if I don't watch any of it.
Right now I can get 80 or so channels of basic cable, and who knows how
many of Digital Cable/Satellite for as many TVs as I can fit in my house
without the Internet buckling under the pressure. I assume AT&T is just
saying "We use this pipe for TV and Internet, hence all TV is now
considered Internet traffic"? How many people are REALLY going to be
pulling 10hrs of HD or even SD TV across their Internet connection,
rather than just taking what is Multicasted from a Satellite base
station by their TV service provider? Is there something significant
about AT&T's model (other than the VDSL over twisted pair, rather than
coax/fiber to the prem) that makes them more afraid than Comcast,
Charter or Cox?
Maybe I'm just totally missing something - Wouldn't be the first time.
Why would TV of any sort even touch the 'Internet'. And, no, YouTube is
not "TV" as far as I'm concerned.
The real problem is that this technology is just in its infancy.
Right now, our TiVo's may pull in many hours a day of TV to watch. In my
case, it's from satellite. In yours, maybe from a cable company. That's
fine, that's manageable, and the technology used to move the signal from
the broad/multicast point to your settop box is only vaguely relevant. It
is not unicast.
There is, however, an opportunity here for a fundamental change in the
distribution model of video, and this should terrify any network operator.
That would be an evolution towards unicast, particularly off-net unicast.
I posted a message on Oct 10 of last year suggesting one potential model
for evolution of video services. We're seeing the market target narrower
segments of the viewing public, and if this continues, we may well see
some "channel" partner with TiVo to provide on-demand access to remote
content over the Internet. That could well lead to a model where you would
have TiVo speculatively preloading content, and potentially vast amounts of
it. Or, worse yet, the popularity of YouTube suggests that at some point,
we may end up with a new "local webserver service" on the next generation
Microsoft Whoopta OS that was capable of publication of video from the
local PC, maybe vaguely similar to BitTorrent under the hood, allowing for
a much higher bandwidth podcast-like service where your TiVo (and everyone
else's) is downloading video slowly from lots of different sources.