Monday, March 27, 2006
Networks Decide To Offer TV Shows As Video On Demand
I love it when big corporations try jump on a bandwagon and do it stupidly. Case in point: Apple proved people will pay good money to own downloads of TV shows they missed or don't otherwise have access to: The Office, Battlestar: Galactica and many others can be bought on iTunes from 12-18 hours after they originally air, minus commercials and ready to play on your computer or iPod as often as you like. HBO offers free HBO On Demand to its premium customers who want to access their library of programs whenever they want -- my brother and his wife just steamrolled through the first two seasons of Deadwood. So what do the major networks do? They are talking with Time Warner cable about finally making their top 20 shows available as video-on-demand. They had the technology to do this five years ago, of course, but couldn't be bothered. Now, with DVRs (and Tivo) an increasing number of people won't need this service. But still they screw it up by offering the shows with commercials that can't be fast-forwarded through. It also costs an extra $10 a month to your already wildly expensive cable bill. Since that makes it immediately inferior (and more expensive) than DVRs, why would anyone use it?