Convergence of telecom, Media and IT had been a topic of business discussion for long. Fast paced technological developments in all these sectors have accelerated the convergence process. Today, we stand very close to the culmination of this much touted phenomena.
We are not very far away when internet, telephone and entertainment requirements will be served by one single company.
In India alone, Bharti-Airtel and other telecom players have already laid down required IPTV infrastructure and probably are in the process of designing ambitious marketing plans. This will practically mean that we will be able to watch real time TV through IP backbone.
Though it may look simple, in my views this will revolutionize the way we experience TV, watch advertisements and do so much with the Idiot Box (On a lighter note- With this new technological development TV gets a chance to get rid of long-stuck stigma- The Idiot Box. Lets see what people label it- Smart idiot box or Idiot Smart box- I guess it will reflect on its viewers) .
The combination of two-way communication, computing and storage in IPTV has a potential to evolve this infrastructure for education and research as well.
There are myriad possibilities that come to my mind, I am writing here about thee of those here-
Transformation in Media Planning
1. There is potential of significant media budget rationalization. Today popular brands run mass TV ADs considering that they have their target audiences somewhere lost in the crowd. It is best to pervade the AD in the air as they can’t risk not reaching those hidden targets. But this risk mitigation cost them huge moneys- ten second slot on popular channels cost millions of Rupees.
All IPTV viewers (as they all belong to consumer class) will have their unique identity and service providers will certainly (or they should actually) profile TV viewers and classify them into various consumer segments. This will allow them to spend AD money much judiciously on the actual target users rather than global viewers. This will therefore cost much less.
Another trend possible will be to run test ADs on a smaller sample before taking nation-wide. So, possibility of pre-AD surveys on live audience.
Also, this will open TV as a media to many SMEs who can’t afford to advertise on TV today but they can once IPTV is in. Brands with smaller budgets will be able to choose target audiences by exact numbers. Therefore this development is likely to impact the whole media industry and there is lot of action possible there.
Reach of Education & Trainings will increase many folds
2. Second important trend possible will be reach of education and training will increase manifolds. TV sets with in-built features, large screen and good audio video quality will be the preferred screens, at least in home environment. Learning delivery tools like LMS and VCR will further evolve to harness the best potential of this pervasive technology.
Content Co-creation opportunities will evolve
3. Variety and models of content generation for entertainment & education will increase- imagine a soap opera where audiences become part of the episode in real time from their homes. Content co-creation has a potential to create innovative and useful products (and mind can run on this thought).
There are many-many possibilities which hit my mind and want to give sometime for thinking further. With time I expect to arrive at conclusive opportunity for our business growth. In the meantime I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
(Ankit Jain is Head – HR & Strategy at G-Cube)