A survey of Internet users shows that they are interested in getting video content from the Internet. A third expressed interest in Google Video and more than 40 percent found Yahoo! Go to be appealing. Most wanted to view content on a computer or laptop, but nearly as many wanted to use a television. An iPod or other cell phone rated much lower.
I might have been more skeptical about this before iTunes managed to sell more than a billion music tracks, but now I see personal entertainment as an unstoppable juggernaut. Video from the Web is a great resource that is still way in its infancy, which in turn means that there is lots of opportunity to shape the services. One important factor is that it needs to be as easy to use on a television as it is to select a broadcast program now. This is a challenge, given the endless variety of content. Another challenge is to index all this content accurately and effectively, so viewers can quickly find the content that interests them. Solve these, and the Internet becomes an endless TiVo filled with free and for-pay programming.
I suspect that there’s a lot of money to be made in solving these challenges; just look at the $1,000,000,000 of iTunes sales!