Twenty five years ago your phone hung on the wall, very few homes had a computer and your TV dominated the living room and cable TV still seemed like a new thing. Today those distinctions have largely disappeared. More people have greater access to music, film and television than ever before because streaming technology turns everything, your TV, computer and an array of portable devices into powerful content delivery systems.
Now the possible collaboration between Apple and Comcast is poised to take it to the next level and create a new future for television.
Streaming puts the power in your hands like never before. On demand content providers give viewers the option to enjoy their favorite show, film or music whenever and wherever they like. Miss the latest episode of your favorite show? No problem, you can catch it during your lunch break on a tablet or smart phone. Want to see it on a big screen? Great deals on TV and internet packages make it a snap to catch the latest episode or a favorite film at home anytime you like.
- Streaming content offers more freedom of choice
- More people opt for streamed content each year
- To compete it needs to be faster with equal or better quality video and sound
- Cloud storage is rapidly becoming the favorite way to store and retrieve content
Cable companies are feeling the impact of streaming and industry leaders like Comcast are working hard to integrate the power and convenience of streaming content into their offerings. A partnership between Comcast and Apple could give them a serious advantage over the competition by joining content with convenience. Digital Trends reports that connecting Apple technology with Comcast bandwidth could provide content faster and at a video quality unmatched by other Internet content providers.
How it Could Work
While the possibility is exciting, don’t expect it to happen soon. The talks are in preliminary stage and there are many hurdles to overcome even if and after they reach an agreement. The most likely situation to develop is some sort of set top box or possibly incorporating Apple technology into Comcast cable boxes to access streaming content from cloud storage via your television.
Both companies face some problems that the collaboration could help with. Cable TV is losing ground against Internet streaming content services and it is a trend that may grow. The fact that a lot of younger viewers prefer online content to cable is something the industry should find especially troubling as it may well represent a growing trend for the future. Apple has been trying to gain a toehold in streaming TV for some time without much success. Combining their tech and design with Comcast networks should provide a benefit to both companies and real benefits to the viewer also.
Buffering and the Last Mile
The major problem with Internet based content is quality. Video uses a lot of bandwidth and slow loading (buffering) and video quality are all issues that annoy viewers and send them elsewhere. Combining the power of Comcast networks easily solves these problems because the network has massive bandwidth. The key may be separating the streamed content out from the other Internet content before it arrives in your home. Separating out the streaming media in the “last mile” before it reaches your TV could provide cable and HD quality content viewers now demand. It hasn’t happened yet, but if it does it may well set the stage for the future of TV as we know it.