06 January 2010

Best Online Television Websites

Cable and satellite television providers are finding it more difficult to compete with internet TV. Here are 5 reasons why:
Go straight to the networks. ABC, the CW, MTV, VH1, and many others offer full episodes, almost as soon as a program airs, on their websites. And NBC offers current shows as well as classics like “Alfred Hitchcock Hour” and “The A-Team.”

Hulu has name recognition for a reason. The site brings together offerings from more than 190 content companies, meaning that you get current shows the morning after they air, plus loads of old shows, movies, documentaries, and web originals.

CastTV is well organized with shows and movies listed by title rather than genre. Find a show and click on it to see all available seasons and episodes. I’ve sneakily been keeping abreast of “Friday Night Lights” here since it’s not airing on NBC for several more months while the season is already mid-way through on DirecTV.

Streamick doesn’t look like much, but it’s a site that allows you to live-stream 263 channels in real time, including NBC, BBC, ESPN, and Cartoon Network. The site eventually hopes to boost the number of available channels to 900.

TIOTI, an abbreviation of Tape It Off The Internet, is part television hub and part social networking site. You can watch your favorite TV shows and share episodes you like with friends. Plus, they have a section for entertainment news. _Frisky

Then of course, YouTube and all the other video sharing sites compete for your time with an ever expanding inventory of user-provided content.  Hardware manufacturers are making it easier for people to combine television and the internet.  Gateway and Apple were among the first, but the stampede is now on -- including popular game players and smart phones.

Web television history and trends

The trend is toward "billion channel television" with increasing fragmentation and individualisation of markets.  This presents product marketers with a bit of a challenge, but for those of us who like unlimited choice, the trend is favourable.

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