Google's Next Major Consumer Project Push Could be Android TV

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    It's no secret that Google TV wasn't the resounding success that Google wanted it to be. It's also no secret that the Google Chromecast was just the opposite, a massive hit which likely even surprised Google themselves. The current trend in television is dumping your cable or satellite provider. Internet based services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO Go and many more are becoming popular alternative options to the stale offerings found with traditional television providers.

    It looks like the Chromecast concept bridged the gap in a much more appealing way than Google's original Google TV idea. It still doesn't provide all of the same potential services, but a hybrid between the two ideas could be just the ticket for Google to dominate in this emerging market. We reported previously that Google might be working on something called Android TV, and that KitKat could bridge that gap. Android 4.4 KitKat has already been released and it doesn't seem to have any specific attachment to such a service; however, new reports out recently are suggesting that Android TV is indeed still moving forward at Google's R&D, and in fact, it could be the next big consumer product that Google decides to start pushing sometime this year.

    We already know that Google merged the Google TV team with the Android team, so this makes even more sense. Here's a quote with a few more details,

    What do you guys think? Does the idea of "a la carte" TV programming appeal to you? Sound off if you have a Chromecast and/or would be interested in the new Android TV concept.

    Source: BGR
  2. badtoy1986
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    badtoy1986 Member

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    Absolutely it does. Ever since it started looking like Intel's venture was going to fail I have been thinking about cutting the cord. There is already a huge amount of content available online. Loosing most sports would be the biggest downside. But if this goes through I would absolutely take advantage of it.
  3. johnomaz
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    johnomaz Well-Known Member

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    My problem is that every ISP has a secret cap for their service. Its usually 250 gigs even though it is advertised as Unlimited. If I were to get rid of my usual TV service for something that is more internet based for the same channels, I would probably hit that cap and so would everyone else. Also, would it be live or streamed? What about sports events. I doubt those would ever get on board. I love the Chromecast and can't wait for Plex to be available for everyone on Chromecast but I wouldn't want a streaming based internet unless I had Google Fiber in my area. I'd rather have an a la carte TV service that isn't internet based.

    Also, my internet is fast enough to stream 1080p content, but not everone's is. I've uploaded a couple 4K videos from my Note 3 to Youtube and can't stream them on my computer smoothly. I know 4K isn't going to become the norm for streaming any time soon, but I'm not willing to pay for more than 20Mb of service. In the US, that is more expensive than it should be.
  4. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    Why is HBO GO mentioned in the same sentence as cable cutters? You still need to have a subscription to HBO to use it... i.e. if you cut the cord, you can't get HBO GO.
  5. xeene
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    xeene Well-Known Member

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    comcast got rid of their 300gb caps couple years ago, I've been constantly using 400-600gb a month with them for years. Now that we switched to faster bright house cable that has no caps, every months for past quarter I upload and download terabytes worth of data. I have not subscribed to cable TV in over 5 Years. I also stopped going to movie theaters this year since I've built one in my basement that has a 120" 3d screen with 1000w surround sound. If it's showing in theaters, it's showing in our basement also ;)
  6. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure "a la carte" pricing will deliver a consumer surplus. Quality on the big networks has certainly declined over the years as cable (and internet and mobile devices, and DVR's) have eaten into the bottom line. I've discovered more than a few shows on numerous less known networks that I probably never would have without cable.

    Without all cable subscribers paying a tiny subsidy for all these different channels content will ultimately suffer. You may save a few bucks cutting the cord, but in the long-run you're going to be paying more for less.

    I have a bundled package that is pretty favorable because it's a competitive market. Standalone high-speed internet (@20mbps) would be $45-$50, but with cable my combined price is about $80 (including HBO). So if HBO is $12, I'm really only paying $20 (after subtracting DVR cost) for all my other cable. And theoretically that means I'd only get 3 channels, or maybe about 8 shows (at $1 per episode).

    Now where things could get interesting is with all the networks moving to stream shows over the internet, they can not only force you to watch the commercials but charge advertisers more because of the improved ability to target demographics. Maybe that is the future, but if everyone starts cutting the cord the illegal places many go for free tv will be ruthlessly cracked down on.

    Also, most people get their internet thru a cable provider. If everyone ditches cable do you honestly think they'll absorb that loss and not raise prices on broadband services?
  7. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    I pay $140/month for 300 channels and my internet.
    I watch MAYBE 20 of those channels.

    I pay so much so that everyone can have ESPN and Disney. THose that don't care about Sports are subsidizing those that do.
    Can't find the article I read...

    Here's an excerpt from a different article:
    "Cox Communications, with 73,000 Northeast Ohio subscribers, is nearing the end of multiyear deals with ESPN and Fox Sports. The two networks' fees already constitute nearly a third of Cox's basic cable rate, and they are reportedly seeking fee hikes of 20 and 35 percent, respectively. Cox, meanwhile, is asking for a double scotch and aspirin."

    A THIRD the cost of the basic cable rate. So whether you want it, or not, you HAVE to pay for it.

    From another:



    https://medium.com/off-the-field/1d7043ed024b

    PLEASE, let me ala carte my Cable TV! I don't want sports. I don't want to pay more for sports so that YOU can watch sports.
    The system is broken.
  8. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    HBO costs $12/mo. Exactly how much do you expect to save paying for 20 channels "a la carte"? Of course sports channels are going to cost more - there's no syndication or re-run revenues.

    And I certainly don't pay for 300 channels - I have maybe 80-100 on the first tier above "basic".

    Like I said, my cable and internet (sans HBO and DVR) is about $60/mo. The problem is lack of competition in some areas (such as yours, apparently). And, by the way, mine is a promotional package as the regular price is north of $130. But I play the game and have been paying $80/mo for several years.

    Most consumers are going to lose out in "a la carte" as they would only be able to afford to watch what is popular (i.e. many people to share the costs of that individual program or sports event).
  9. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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  10. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    I don't WANT to pay for Sports. That's my point. I don't have a choice. So a significant portion of my bill goes towards sports, which I could care less about.

    As for my promo package, it has expired and my bill has now reached the stellar height of $140. I am tiered if threatening to leave to get a new promo price. So this time I am just leaving.
  11. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    But you still have to PAY COMCAST. How is that "cutting the cord".
    If I have no Cable or Satellite, why can't I pay $20 month for HBO and use GO? You cannot. (Nor would I, just saying in general).

    As originally reported by DSL Reports, Comcast is offering an Internet-HBO bundle without access to other cable channel add-ons. The Internet Plus offer brings together 25Mbps Internet access, Limited Basic TV, Comcast’s VOD service XFINITY Streampix, and everyone’s favorite network to bittorrent, HBO. The price is $40 to $50 a month for the first 12 months depending on your geographic location. Then of course it shoots up to $70 to $80 a month.
  12. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    For some folks, just having the internet plus HBO Go is a great option. You are right that technically you are not "cutting the cord" if you have cable internet, but depending on what city you are in, your options for solid internet might be limited. I still have cable internet for the reliability and speed, but I ditched Cable TV 8 years ago and have never looked back.

    You have to get your internet from somewhere, so in my mind I don't really consider it the same way. Getting internet plus HBO Go sounds like a fantastic idea!
  13. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    I suppose. I imagine I would feel differently if I thought HBO was worth it. ;)
  14. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    Truthfully only for part of the season. Sad how far big screen content has fallen (and it was never that good), you know, being a MOVIE CHANNEL and all. So really you are just left with a few good original series that run about 10 weeks each.

    Also worth a subscription just to catch-up on past HBO hits like Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Wire, Deadwood, Sopranos and Rome.

    Heck, for that matter you might only need HBO for 1-2 months a year. Just subscribe for a month to catch-up on that year's shows (and binge watching is usually more satisfying).
  15. AECRADIO
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    AECRADIO Member

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    My wife and I feel the same as you do.
    We do NOT like sports, have never watched a single game, but with the cable system we have, we are being billed for services we never use, and I resent having to pay for sports channels we do not want, but are forced to, so, like you, this is our final month.
    We hate freeloaders, and cable is nothing but welfare for sports lovers, and my paying for 'subscriptions' we do not want is insanity.
    Even if we did like sports, we would still be paying for sporting events that have zero appeal to us, again, welfare to the masses!

    We have a cable provider out of Bonduel, WI. called: Lakeland Cablevision, and their pricing of the service is nuts.
    Even though many may assume $54.00/month is 'okay', but we may watch a few channels for this fee. And most are the local off-air channels, like public TV and local stations we can easily receive off-air.
    Our ROI is just not worth it, the bill keeps going up, and even $54.00 is far too much for a 'basic' plan.
    No wonder cable is losing customers!
  16. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    It's not that simple...while you subsidize sports lovers, they also subsidize content they don't particularly care for. So whether or not you win on an "a la carte" deal comes down to how popular your favorite channels are relative to production costs. You're assuming sports viewers represent a smaller % of subscribers relative to the cost of sports programming.

    I actually very rarely watch ESPN or Fox Sports, but if it's 1/3 of my basic cable rate then I'm paying about $7/mo for the two. I'd put my break-even at about 3 events a year.

    Bundled deal typically create a surplus because lower marketing/distribution/overhead enables the consumer and company to share in those savings. If I were to count up my favorite tv shows I watch regularly...let's just call it a dozen shows x 20 episodes would equal $20/mo (at $1 per show on Itunes, etc...). That's before watching anything else or any sports events - I'd save $30/mo dropping cable so I "subsidize" a total of $10/mo. I just don't see how that's a bad deal or a rip-off.

    More networks are offering their content online for free (with ads)...so you're welcome to cut the cord if you can wait a week after new shows air. Of course if everyone were to do this then inevitably home broadband prices will go up significantly, likely increasing to a price we currently pay for bundled service (because the cable companies are going to get their money one way or the other).

    Alternatively in the pay-per-episode model, content choices would necessarily suffer or popular shows would increase in price to subsidize development/launch of new shows. The only people who are really losing or subsidizing other subscribers are those who watch significantly less than the average amount of tv.

    Ultimately competition and choices will better align what a consumer pays with perceived value. I'm not sure it's would be very significant for most, and talking real savings will probably be mostly driven by technology advances reducing distribution costs (i.e. high speed wireless).
  17. xeene
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    xeene Well-Known Member

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    TV should be streamed over the net with pay per show pricing. Any channel, any show. Price it from 25 cents to $1 and people will buy.
  18. mountainbikermark
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    mountainbikermark DF Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    For the last 14 years, every spring, congress has a bill introduced for what you seek. Every year it gets shot down by lobbyists in congressional pockets.
    Get a free app for your phone called Congress, write your local representatives and tell them you're watching what they're doing. Since I did just that in 2010 my 2 senators and my house representative email me regularly heading off the rant they expect from me. I vote for *****in rights along with my supporting the troops by doing so.
    That being said should Android tv take off look for the fcc to stick their noses in and muddy up the water also along with congressional incumbents looking for headlines to get re-elected.

    Support Our Troops!!!
    <><
    s pen aholic in Beast Mode (Notetoo)
  19. PereDroid
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    PereDroid Well-Known Member

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    Been there, done that. Showtime. Dexter.
    Wait til season is over. Buy Showtime for one month and watch it all On Demand. Cancel. ;)
  20. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    I really should do this more, even $12/mo adds up. Especially with HBO Go you can then go online and view the entire series history, including past shows like The Wire, etc...

    Guess I'm just to impatient to wait 3 months for new seasons to wrap. For that matter, I'm only watching Game of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire, so not sure why I don't at least cancel the other 6 months.
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