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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This could be good depending on what content is included. I also wonder if amazon plans to release streaming apps for game consoles and other devices like netflix has done.

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives...aming-only.php

Over the last year, Netflix has gone from a mail-order DVD subscription service to a streaming Internet video service. In the company's last quarterly report, it announced that streaming had surpassed DVDs as the preferred method for content delivery and just last month it began offering a streaming-only option in the U.S.


Seeing this success, then, it doesn't come as a surprise that Amazon - the world's largest Internet retailer - is looking to make a subscription-based, streaming-only option of its own to compete with Netflix.


Already, Amazon offers streaming television shows and movies through its Video On Demand product, which is available on both computers as well as Internet TV devices, but this provides more of an a-la carte offering. According to The Wall Street Journal, the company is "developing a Netflix-like subscription service that would offer TV shows and movies, according to people familiar with the matter. That service would be included as a bundle with its Amazon Prime shipping service, which costs $79 a year, those people said."


Amazon Prime is a program that gives "unlimited fast shipping" for frequent Amazon shoppers. It's interesting that Amazon would focus so much on the form of content delivery and package it together with traditional shipping. Will Amazon users really have to continue paying a-la carte for most content and only get a Netflix-type option if they subscribe to a service meant for traditional shipping fees? The Business Insider points out that, at $79 per year, the service would beat out Netflix at it's own game, which comes in at $95 annually "and doesn't include free shipping on purchases from Amazon."
 

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I'm not sure if competition is good or bad in this case. In most cases it keeps prices down but with competing services the cost of content might rise enough to make it more expensive and at the same time end up offering less content (having it distributed among the players).


As an example I never watched 24 but I started streaming it on Netflix and got hooked. Well Hulu Plus got the last season and Netflix didn't... I presume it was issued was an exclusive.


So far Hulu Plus hasn't gained my interest even after using it for a month. Netflix has the advantage of content depth that makes the service valuable such as if you tire of TV series you can find movies or special interest shows/films to keep you going. The depth of their content keeps my streaming queue at well over 100 titles which probably converts into 500 (or so) if you count individual episodes.


If streaming content gets split apart the value of each service is greatly reduced. Hopefully going forward it will become mainstream enough to break into several categories...
  • Newer TV series
  • Newer movies
  • Older TV series
  • Older movies

All of which are available to different streaming services and priced separately as groups. Instead of Dish and DirecTV you have Netflix and Amazon.
 

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They are getting closer to become a threat to Netflix and with their current OnDemand service, they are positioned to offer new releases for streaming as well.



Quote:
Signaling its looming presence in the subscription movie rental market, Amazon.com has acquired Lovefilm, a company similar to Netflix that operates in Europe.


The deal comes as Amazon is preparing to launch an online movie subscription business in the United States that would compete with Netflix's popular streaming service, according to people familiar with the matter. The Seattle-based company could potentially use Lovefilm's technology to help it launch that operation.
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/ente...of-europe.html
 

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More streaming services like Netflix is a good thing from a consumer standpoint. With digital content, everyone can stream the same content. This will not be like network TV with exclusive viewership of their content and huge distribution infrastructure. That's all going to go away.


With streaming, the more streaming services there are the more money content providers will receive from all the combined services and therefore prices for each service will tend to be lower because the cost of content is spread out among all the services. Then, the streaming services would have to compete on picture and sound quality and customer service and not on exclusive content. It's a win-win situation for everyone.


If the content owners are smart, they would allow their content to be streamed by as many streaming services as possible and they would work to ensure they all were profitable.


Case in point: Sports used to be everywhere on broadcast TV. Now it's almost exclusive to cable, or worse PPV, so I've learned to not watch sports and I will never again watch sports like I used to. I've moved on. If content owners want their content to stay relevant, they need to keep it before as many customers as possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Unfortunately, I and reality disagree with you. PPV will always be here. There just will be multiple viewing windows (in terms of release dates): theater > PPV/DVD > DVD rental > 28 day DVD rental > premium cable > streaming > TV. Hollyweird wants to add another variable to the mix: premium PPV where you can watch first run movies day and date with theaters. As long as hollyweird holds all of the marbles (content), they control things.
 

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Cygnus, I was approaching this from a consumer standpoint. If one holds all the marbles and nobody wants to play with you, what good are all your marbles? Using the viewing window model is not relevant to the issue you originally raised.


Everyone's time will be filled doing something. They can spend it watching video content or reading a book or fishing or gardening in their back yards. It's entirely a function of perceived value. Already, people are perceiving that going to the theater is not a good value anymore. How much longer before everyone decides that streaming is the best option for watching content and how will the content owners address this?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Looking at the example you gave in a prior reply: sports. NFL is as popular as ever despite MNF moving from free OTA channel to ESPN. NFL Network is moving more games to thursday to make the channel more value to fans. While you may not care, many others do. When my cable company dropped NFL Network, they lost quite a few customers. There will always be a market for "premium" content. Don't get me wrong, I wish that was not the case but the average consumer can be gullible... I think what has hurt hollyweird more over the less few years is the lack of quality movies being released. Thus I rarely if ever go to theaters, nor do I buy movies, or even get premium movie channels or VOD. That is not the case with the average consumer.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19867493


More streaming services like Netflix is a good thing from a consumer standpoint. With digital content, everyone can stream the same content. This will not be like network TV with exclusive viewership of their content and huge distribution infrastructure. That's all going to go away.

I doubt it. Just like 24 where Netflix has most of the seasons and Hulu Plus has the last season. Studios will sell their exclusive rights to different providers.

Quote:
With streaming, the more streaming services there are the more money content providers will receive from all the combined services and therefore prices for each service will tend to be lower because the cost of content is spread out among all the services.

The more services the more competition for content which will raise its value (providers pay more) and raise prices.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cygnus2112 /forum/post/19870797


Yeah thats why its important for NF to sign up long term deals with content holders.

It appears the studios have caught on. With the Starz deal (woefully underpaid) and Epic (woefully overpaid) they see how easily they can get burned and just as easily get paid handsomely. In the near future I see short term deals and even some content disappearing or not being made available (like V season two). Why give away your future rights when there is bound to be additional providers bidding before long...
 

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A fundamental principle is being overlooked here. Over the last 30 years, starting with the advent of CD music discs, the value of digital content has dropped over time....always, and with hundreds of thousands (soon to be millions) of studio and independent movies, TV shows, and other digital content available for distribution at essentially zero cost after encoding, just what is going to keep the value where it is now?


It's a two-edged sword with content owners withholding their product and trying to stay relevant, i.e, 24. These people depend on public mind-share for the success of their shows, and more importantly their ability to raise money to create new shows. They also understand how fickle the viewing public can be because of the already huge amount of content available for competition, and that's only going to get worse going forward. Besides, anyone who cared has already seen all of 24. So already its value is greatly diminished. Same with Starz and Epic, but I'm sure they will get much more favorable treatment from Netflix in the future than, say, HBO who said Netflix would have to charge $20 a month just to carry their content (ie, putting the value of HBO streaming at about $10 mo per subscriber). Yeah, Dream On HBO!


Although sports is unique due to its live nature, the problem with NFL football is that people are being forced to buy a service (cable/sat) that they do not see as having as much value anymore. I've seen the promise of streaming and I cannot go back to "watching TV". It's basic human nature; when you find something better, you don't go back. I blame the NFL for this, not Comcast or ESPN, etc. If this is not fixed soon people will start to lose interest in the game, as much as I hate to say it because I love watching football, but people hate feeling manipulated or cheated even more than they hate not being able to do something they enjoy.



This is the point I'm making: There are around 100 million households just in the US. Lets say I would pay $1 mo per streaming service for HBO's content. If there were five or six major streaming services all carrying HBO to all 100 million households, there would be no problem. That's just the US. HBO could easily do the same around the world. That's why I'm saying the days of exclusivity are over.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19878002


Besides, anyone who cared has already seen all of 24. So already its value is greatly diminished. Same with Starz and Epic

If there is no value in Epix, then why did NF spend a billion dollars to stream their content? There is value in 24 and other show in reruns too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19878002


I blame the NFL for this, not Comcast or ESPN, etc. If this is not fixed soon people will start to lose interest in the game

NFL is easily the most profitable US sport. NFL is so popular now that owners want to increase the season by 2 games. Thus I don't see too much lost interest here


Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19878002


This is the point I'm making: There are around 100 million households just in the US. Lets say I would pay $1 mo per streaming service for HBO's content. If there were five or six major streaming services all carrying HBO to all 100 million households, there would be no problem. That's just the US. HBO could easily do the same around the world. That's why I'm saying the days of exclusivity are over.

I don't see your point. There are already multiple ways to watch HBO content: cable, satelite, IPTV, digital download, etc. In the future I do see HBO possibly having a more direct service to consumers, e.g. internet stream with no cable, sat service needed. But that still will come at a price.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19878002


Besides, anyone who cared has already seen all of 24. So already its value is greatly diminished.

Actually dramatic series are extremely popular via Netflix where they haven't been with traditional syndication since they need to be watched in series. Of course the more seasons the better. I never watched 24 until I started streaming via Netflix. That alone got quite a few months out of me and Hulu Plus picked up a month when I subscribed to it to catch the last season. Somehow it didn't seem diminished when I paid for it.



Regarding what HBO charges there is always a sweet spot. Charge more and you lose subscribers, charge less and you don't pick up enough to offset what you lose. Locally Comcast charges $19.99 a month for HBO (non-promotional cost). Remember it could be free and a large number of viewers wouldn't even subscribe - their market isn't everyone.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood /forum/post/19878002


That's why I'm saying the days of exclusivity are over.

Your logic is flawed because:


1- IPTV revenue is such a tiny fraction of the total revenue from movie studios, broadcast networks, sports associations, etc., etc. IPTV is the current Buzz but it has yet to generate any real money for the license holders.


2- Access. With cable, broadcast and satellite it is easy to see what is on, when and where, see Titan or Zap-2-It for additional guides. With IPTV, finding content can be a crap shoot for Mr/Ms average. The IPTV is a very fragmented market (every man for himself), Google recognized this and has tried to develop a solution and they have already hit some brick walls.
 

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Well, everyone is addressing what currently IS and assuming it will remain the same. There's a ton of evidence refuting that an economic/demographic trend in motion will continue forever. In fact, universally it never does. So, why didn't Amazon come out with a new pay network to market to the broadcast/cable/sat companies if it is such a sure thing? In fact, I admit that I did not understand the effect streaming could have until I experienced it. I had to do a 180-degree turn in my thinking.


Sure, the NFL is hugely popular now, but look at its demographic: Older white males. Look in the stands of any NFL game; see many kids? They are so rare they show shots of them on TV. The NBA is even worse. Bowling was king in the 1950-60's. I remember it on TV every Saturday as a kid. Where is it now? More kids now play soccer in our schools than football. How is that good for the NFL? The market is always moving. People just need to recognize the game changers when they occur (i.e. home video and gaming, the World Wide Web, and now streaming, to cover the last 30+ years in the digital realm).


I've tried to address what streaming will become. The OP asked whether Amazon entering the streaming market is a good thing. I said it is and gave my reasons why. I'm not arguing with anyone's feedback. Who am I to say how anyone else perceives value?


What I am saying is that streaming is the most revolutionary thing to come along since the World Wide Web, so I'll make yet another prediction: Within 10 years, the majority of content will be watched via IP and more cheaply than we get it now regardless of what the cable/sat/broadcast model does to fight back. They have lots of money now but for them the internet is a black hole. It will suck in every penny they throw at it and not even burp. Comcast buying NBC/Universal proves to me they still don't get it. The market will simply go around them and move on and the content will follow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood
Well, everyone is addressing what currently IS and assuming it will remain the same.
Well it was you who wrote:

"That's why I'm saying the days of exclusivity are over."


You were speaking in present tense...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood
There's a ton of evidence refuting that an economic/demographic trend in motion will continue forever. In fact, universally it never does.
I don't dispute that. But you are trying to predict the future. I simply disagree with your prediction. The reason being

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood
Sure, the NFL is hugely popular now, but look at its demographic: Older white males. Look in the stands of any NFL game; see many kids?
Of course not. How many kids can afford to go to an NFL game? Besides, even if they could afford it, they will need their parents to take them.
How many ppl can afford to take a family of 4 to an NFL game or want to go thru the hassle? Spectator sports appeal to adults. Adults buy their HDTVs. Kids start watching with their fathers and/or friends. So when they get older, some of them will go to games. Rinse, repeat...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood
More kids now play soccer in our schools than football. How is that good for the NFL? The market is always moving.
Soccer will never, let me repeat, never be popular as a spectator sport in US as NFL or even NBA. Parents have their kids playing soccer because its relatively safe, inexpensive and a good way to keep them in shape.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taperwood
What I am saying is that streaming is the most revolutionary thing to come along since the World Wide Web, so I'll make yet another prediction: Within 10 years, the majority of content will be watched via IP and more cheaply than we get it now regardless of what the cable/sat/broadcast model does to fight back. They have lots of money now but for them the internet is a black hole. It will suck in every penny they throw at it and not even burp. Comcast buying NBC/Universal proves to me they still don't get it. The market will simply go around them and move on and the content will follow.
Streaming media has been here since the Real Audio days on 28k modems. Its just that now bandwidth, storage, technology, etc have increased and gotten dirt cheap. What has not changed is old hollyweird studios controlling the content. Unfortunately I don't see that changing too much any time soon. They will bend (e.g. increase the number of viewing windows) but not break their money making system. Unfortunately the old saying "the more things change, the more they stay the same" axiom is applicable here.
 

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Your initial post infers that I reply with a prediction: "This could be good depending on what content is included. I also wonder if amazon plans to release streaming apps for game consoles and other devices like netflix has done."


I said I thought Amazon's move was a good thing and that streaming will only increase over time and then gave real-world examples why I predicted that. Is that the prediction you disagree with? Of course I can't know the future any more than you can, but when I see black clouds coming I know it's going to rain. Is that knowing the future? Obviously, Amazon sees the same things I do. So does Hollywood, but they are like the deer in the headlights..well, tough luck if you can't make yourself move.


Your last paragraph makes my point precisely. Listening to music has become essentially free via streaming. Only if you want to possess a copy (i.e., make it portable) do you have to pay for it. The record companies could do nothing to stop this trend and it took barely 10 years for it to happen. What changed is that the record companies were forced by the market to give up control of access to simply listening to music. No more "money for nothing"
The same thing will happen to "hollyweird" when the hardware constraints you mention are removed for streaming video. Then you will only have to pay big bucks for the latest bad-ass teenage angst over eating werewolves while wizards circle above them on magic baseball bats shooting down football-shaped Disneyesque children chanting Lady Gaga songs movie... or did they already do that one?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cygnus2112 /forum/post/19886336


Streaming media has been here since the Real Audio days on 28k modems. Its just that now bandwidth, storage, technology, etc have increased and gotten dirt cheap. What has not changed is old hollyweird studios controlling the content. Unfortunately I don't see that changing too much any time soon. They will bend (e.g. increase the number of viewing windows) but not break their money making system. Unfortunately the old saying "the more things change, the more they stay the same" axiom is applicable here.
 
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