First, I wanted to thank Bain & Company for providing me with more background on the news story I quoted the other day.  Frank Pinto has been an excellent and most helpful contact.  With the information he provided, I can answer some of the questions that came to mind.

  • are these findings true across Europe & Asia?  yes, on average there has been a steady increase (1% annual) in European viewing over the 2001 to 2005 period.  This compares to 2% annual growth rate in US market.  There is some regional variation - for example, viewing times in the UK & France are declining.  Another interesting tidbit - Europeans watch less TV than North Americans: US viewers watch about 32 hours a week on average; UK and France, about 24 hours; Austria & Switzerland, 19 hours.
  • is the interactive & personalization angle considered? yes, it certainly has been. In fact, the Bain report (The Digital Video Consumer: Transforming the European Video Content Market - 2007)  used a scenario planning methodology to look at possible scenarios to consider adoption of 'lean forward" TV.  Their conclusion is that the most likely scenario is an 'evolving' one where linear TV (lean back) remains the dominant form of viewing with slow, yet steady growth in video-on-demand, mobile video, time-shifted TV and so on.
  • does interactive viewing represent a 'shift' or a 'lift' in overall TV viewing?  the answer?  a bit of both.  The overall 1% annual growth will raise overall TV viewing.  The projected adoption of 'lean-forward' TV means this will outpace linear TV viewing in the scenarios considered
  • is there a viewing segmentation based on content type?  this wasn't explicitly covered in the materials I reviewed.

So, interestingly, for the bulk of US & Europe TV is alive, well & growing.

---- Kirk Edwardson

A recent report from Bain & Company covered in a Reuters story suggests that US viewers will watch an additional 2 hours of TV per week by 2012.  The drivers behind this growth?  Growth in video-on-demand choices & the use of digital video recorders. Alternatively, the use of internet usage (i,e outside the home) will only grow by .5 hr per week. This brought to mind a bunch of questions:

  • will the interactivity & personalization capabilities promised by IPTV factor into this?
  • would this finding hold in Europe & Asia?
  • does this represent a substition effect of video rentals for TV services?  in other words, net-net, is the amount of time spent watching TV holding constant but the delivery mechanism is changing (from DVD rental/purchase) to VoD?
  • is there viewing segmentation based on content type?  for example, do subscribers accept 'good enough' distribution (i,.e, mono sound, small screen for programming like the news) versus needing 'premium' distribution for a sporting event in HDTV with surround sound?

I'll look into this a bit more & see what I can find.

--- Kirk Edwardson

As  noted a few weeks ago, the FCC was looking at increased regulations to open up the US cable market.  As reported today, though, the FCC has backed away from this.  The report suggesting enough share has been reached to warrant enhanced regulations will be released to congress without a vote to weigh in if the 70/70 rule has been attained.

Kirk Edwardson

The Future is Now - A Blog from Tokyo

November 21, 2007 12:30 AM | 0 Comments

I'm attending a NGN network & service conference in Japan this week. Riding the Tokyo subway, one cannot help but be struck by the anywhere, anytime nature of TV & Internet here. It seems every 3rd or 4th person is accessing email, chat or TV from their mobile device during their commute.  Compared to other regions, Japan has both the wireline & wireless infrastructure to enable many of the IPTV services we're all excited about.  This is definitely one of the key markets to watch to see how IPTV unfolds.

Kirk Edwardson

A New York Times story this weekend notes the FCC is planning to "impose significant new regulations to open the cable television market to independent programmers and rival video services after determining that cable companies have become too dominant in the industry, senior commission officials said."  This story follows reports a few weeks ago the FCC also plans to place a ban on exclusive cable contracts with multi-dwelling in late October.  In both cases, these planned regulations are intended to create more competition in TV services.  No doubt, US IPTV service providers are paying close attention to how these play out.

Kirk Edwardson

I saw a note in Advanced Television daily news referring to a new Parks Associates whitepaper looking at IPTV service in Europe.  The whitepaper "IPTV in Europe: Digital TV in a Hyper-Competitive Market" considers Europe a test bed for deployment of advanced television services. It notes that global growth rate of suscriber base has grown 232% year-over-year.  Yet, service providers are "still strugging with how to price, differentiate and market this new service."  Regardless, though, it forecasts 500% growth in subscribers through to 2011.  Check out the paper at

Kirk Edwardson - Espial

Check out the list of countries leading the race for the most IPTV deployments. Looks like France Telecom SA is leading France to the number one spot right now,  while carriers in Hong Kong and the US are boosting these countries to number 2 and 3. More carriers are set to reveal their subscriber numbers in the next few stay tuned and see if your country is moving its way to the top. 

And the results of our latest poll are in. Starting a few weeks ago, we asked you "what’s the most important IPTV application for subscribers?"  Three distinct groups of responses emerged from the results. Coming in a comfortable first place as your most important application is “internet on TV”.  Clearly, having access to internet on TV is important.  I’m wondering why this scored so highly? Do people want to:

  • look up information associated with the program they’re watching?
  • multi-task – watch one sports event while tracking results of other events?
  • have access to favourite web applications and portals?
  • watch video content like YouTube over the internet ?

Instead of guessing, I'm going to use this as a topic for the next poll. We can drill down to see why this is so important! 


The areas you voted as the next most important applications include Basic TV, Personalized Advertising, Red Button TV and DVR.  The message here seems to be “give me my basic TV and allow for some personalization (personalized advertising at 11%) and more interactivity while I watch TV" (DVR at 11% and Red Button TV at 10%). 


The third set of applications you want to see is EPG (4%), VOD (6%), StartOver TV (3%) and convergence applications (4%).  This grab bag of applications would appear to tell us a few things. That EPG, VOD and StartOver TV are now tablestakes applications. They remain important but are less differentiating than they were 12 months ago. My guess is that convergence applications will become more important over time - they are an exciting development but haven’t quite achieved critical importance for the industry. 


Of course, these are all my opinions & I’d love to get your impressions too.  Please post your comments.  And for those who love to see the actual results, here they are!  Watch for the new poll in a few days.



Poll Results

Basic TV


Personalized advertising




StartOver TV


Convergence applications


Red Button TV






Internet on TV


Kirk Edwardson

DVR Vs. Time-Shifted TV

August 20, 2007 9:04 AM | 0 Comments

DVR vs. Time-Shifted TV

IPTV has already moved beyond the “lab trial” stage to very large deployments. On the features/functionality front, while many operators are still challenged with getting a basic broadcast-emulation TV service deployed, others are finding ways to move beyond these less sophisticated offerings. Increasingly, this differentiation involves separating the time content is initially offered to subscribers from the time they actually want to watch the content.

One option is DVR, which itself comes in two varieties: CPE-based DVR which involves a hard-drive on the STB, or network-DVR (N-DVR) which utilizes resources maintained by the service provider. In both scenarios, the benefits of DVR is it gives the most flexibility to subscribers to choose what content they want to record, schedule repeat recordings, and view whenever they want. It has the potential for a high degree of personalization and integration with mixed media applications including VoD, internet TV, and personal photo and video storage. For the CPE-based variety it also has the advantage of adding cost burden to only those subscribers willing to pay for it (by obtaining an upgraded STB). Finally, CPE-based DVR is based on a business model that has become accepted in part because it provides reasonable security to content providers (however, some N-DVR deployments have been held up due to regulation and litigation).

On the downside for DVR, it tends to be more of a “lean forward” experience because the overall user experience is quite sophisticated, which, without an intuitive user interface, can also mean complex and confusing. Some users get frustrated with having too many options and having to set up recordings time and again. For this reason some operators are rolling out simpler applications such as “Start Over TV”, which allows you to go back to the beginning of a show if you missed it, making it easier for less sophisticated users to experience the benefits of powerful DVR technology.

Another challenge with CPE-based DVR is it introduces a fail point in an already difficult maintenance issue, the hard drive. Hard drives are always weak points in any electronic device and drive up mean-time-between-failure (MBTF) metrics and overall support costs.

While DVR and related applications will continue to gather steam, some operators are deploying a different architecture in parallel or in place of DVR. This option for flexible content viewing is time-shifted TV. Time-shift TV (TSTV) lets you watch content from a video on demand list pre-determined by the service provider. It could include all the most popular shows for the past 7 days for example. As an application similar to VoD, it can be a much simpler and more familiar user interface, leading to more of a “lean back” experience.  It also can be enabled on a lower cost STB, since the system taxes network resources of the service provider shared across many subscribers rather than adding expensive hard drives to each STB. Finally, the business model for TSTV is flexible and supports both subscription and, like VoD, per transaction billing.

Of course, for every application there is always a down-side. For TSTV, it has to do with the fact that the subscriber has less flexibility than DVR, since the operator decides what content is available to them. This can be a problem for subscribers who like DVR precisely because of its ability to record special interest content that only few may like, such as a special on the origins of Atlantis. Also, while the initial costs of the CPE may be lower, the operator now has an increased burden to purchase network storage equipment and must determine the right algorithm to balance costs to manage the higher transaction load from all the TSTV unicast video traffic.

At the end of the day, we see operators considering both approaches to flexible content viewing, and will decide based on costs, user preferences, and in some cases regulation, which approach is best for them.

-Brian Mahony


I've had many conversations recently about the differentiating attributes of various IPTV service platforms. Many things come to mind-- service interactivity, web browsing, quantity and quality of content and applications, targeted advertising, triple/quad integration, etc. One characteristic that often gets bandied about is fast channel change speed. Let’s delve a little deeper into this concept.

First, if you accept the fact that, to be successful and enjoy decent uptake, IPTV service offerings from Telcos and other service providers will need to be differentiated from the traditional broadcast TV services of cable and satellite providers, one needs to challenge whether fast channel change will measure up to what is provided today. Folks like Microsoft promise improvements of about 50% or so for channel change speed, from 1-2 seconds to “under a second.” Several questions can be raised as to what the exact apples to apples comparison is (compared to cable or other IPTV service platforms) and whether a 500-800ms channel change is even good enough for a quality of experience that might motivate a subscriber to switch from cable.

Assuming there is some significant incremental value for fast channel change, the cost to deliver this value has to be analyzed. All of the information I have seen to date tells me that the incremental cost in terms of D-servers and other equipment to deliver this value is not worth it. IPTV service providers may find that the cost and scalability of this solution simply does not add up, and would only make sense for the high-end of the market willing to pay more for their IPTV service. The question remains whether operators will be able to allocate the equipment and cost of fast channel change to support only those subscribers willing to pay for it, rather than burdening the entire network and subscriber base with this cost.

The final, and I would argue most important, consideration with regard to fast channel change is exactly why you would need this in the first place. I don’t doubt the value relative to existing broadcast TV offerings. I only question the value relative to IPTV service offerings (which now exceed 7 million subscribers worldwide according to market research firm Infonetics). The problem is IPTV service offerings, again to be compelling and differentiating, will have huge numbers of assets to be managed. These will include hundreds of IPTV channels including HD, hundreds of DVR recordings, tens of thousands of VOD assets, PPV, music and other media, hundreds of games, many micro-applications, and potentially millions of YouTube-type internet video assets and internet TV channels and blogs. In this environment, it can be argued that “flipping channels” up and down to find the content or apps that you want is a prehistoric approach to the problem. More appropriate is having a very intuitive EPG with very fast universal search capability, with some level of personalization and artificial intelligence and subscriber profiling to help guide the viewer to the content they want to watch. In this world, channel change speed is an archaic metric; “time to find and watch” desired content is the correct metric. The goal here is to help the viewer think about, find, select, and tune the content they want (even sometimes when the viewer does not know in advance what that is). This needs to work independent of any determination of channel number or even asset type (e.g., live TV versus VOD). Increasingly, viewers are forgetting about at what channel their content is found (snap poll: name the channel number and network of your top 5 favorite shows; now do the same for your favorite VODs, DVRs, etc—can’t do it, can you?).

So to conclude, while fast channel change speed is indeed important for improving subscriber quality of experience, differentiating IPTV services with a multitude of content options would benefit most from fast scrolling, fast and intuitive navigation, and fast searching for content across all the different asset types. This can be done with next-generation interactive IPTV middleware systems without the need to burden the network with extra (and perhaps unnecessary) equipment.

-Brian Mahony

What's going on with the TV world today? Not IPTV specifically, but television in general. What makes the average viewer compelled to pick up the remote and power on their attention?

Nothing is making me do it lately. And I'm not pressing ON until a few of my biggest complaints are turned OFF.

1. Advert Vertigo: When I listen to free radio, I put up with the ads. But when I pay for radio, I pay for the privilege of not hearing any ads. So why should I have to pay such a heavy price to watch TV that's replete with advertising? What's stopping the TV industry from incorporating a similar radio model themselves? Sure producers, operators, set-top box manufacturers and all those in between need to make money. But why is the payment plan shouldered by the viewers? (Btw, a friend of mine pointed this out to an American cable company telemarketer and received an earful about being un-American. We're still trying to figure out if that was a part of the planned spiel or a sudden burst of pent-up frustration at yet another unsatisfied customer...)
2. Crap Crap Crap: Content, of course. While there is certainly some very good content, the more important points are that (a) my joy is someone else's crap, (b) I don't want to wade through crap to experience my joy.
3. A la carte, please: Let me buy the channels I want. When I buy a book, I don't expect to receive 10 other books and an accompanying page-turner which forces me to read the books in a particular order with someone controlling the page-rate. So I would prefer to buy my programs a la carte and, since I'm paying I'd like it without adverts please!
4. Regulatory purgatory: The CRTC (Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission) wants to make sure people are offered Canadian content. Fortunately there is some great Can-con. Then unfortunately there's the rest of Can-con. See point 2 above and here's the problem with regulated enforcement: the folks making Can-con don't have to worry about getting their shows rejected because the operators HAVE to show Can-con. Unfortunately producers make shows with what appears to be $5 and a nickel or two! Are we just under funded in the country? Or does competition work to create better shows? By letting Can-con face-off with truly good TV we just might end up with good Can-con. And then it won't matter if its Can-con because it will just be good content and then who cares ... good-con is better than Can-con, USA-con, Mexi-con or whatever.
I would like to think that none of the above is new; surely brighter and more in-tune minds have seen the same and said as much. And perhaps someone's even listening.

UI: The Final Frontier for IPTV

February 6, 2007 11:36 AM | 0 Comments

UI: The Final Frontier for IPTV


You have a back end. You have maxed out your QoS quotas and your IPTV service is streaming its way to thousands of set-top-boxes. You have a VOD server. You have cunningly negotiated to acquire a host of 3rd party applications and you have squeezed the most horsepower out of your set-top-box: megahertz per dollar. Now, after all of that hard work, all that remains is the elusive UI. The snazzy user experience, the eye candy that will surely let you seal the deal with your subscribers.


So how do you fly by all of the stars in the universe to make your solution known? How do you reach out and entertain your subscribers above and beyond the standard video content being delivered to millions of homes over the IP network? The answer is to reinvent the TV surfing experience and demand more out of the available technology. Do not get pigeon-holed into offering another static client side application claiming to boast a TV-friendly UI. Instead, settle for no less than a rich and compelling, truly open, client-resident user experience platform with absolutely no restrictions.


This can be accomplished in the IPTV market today, and here are three key features that will ensure your IPTV solution can remain the most competitive, visually stunning, yet cost effective solution among your rivals. The first key is performance. The software framework facing the customers at the STB end of the spectrum must be small, fast and portable. Key two: openness. Standards are racing to catch up with the world of IPTV. Ensure that you select a software stack that’s open so you can easily make changes and adopt the evolving requirements and solutions put forth by the best in the industry. The final key is to look for data-driven solutions as opposed to the old request-and-wait paradigms that some still believe to be valid for the IPTV space. Let's look at each of these in a bit more detail.


Performance. Response. Master these and you will quickly be on your way to maximizing end-user experience. Within the realm of performance and response there are a few notable areas that should define your requirements for the selection of a great client-side IPTV UI framework.


The software which resides on the STB must be small; very light in footprint. Software which is small facilitates great performance increases. For example, a small footprint allows for greater memory usage both on the hard disk and in RAM. Not only will this free more memory for native processes and 3rd party applications, it will also save space for the user to squeeze more recorded program time on your DVR-enabled boxes. For those STBs which always retrieve their software image on bootup, a smaller footprint for the native client-side framework will reduce bandwidth traffic during mass reboot scenarios and will guarantee faster boot and reboot times versus other, heavier solutions.


The software which resides on the STB must be fast; very responsive to user input. The standard IR remote control already takes away much of the control in this area. Obviously slower than a mouse click or a keyboard press the IR control limps along and often misses user input altogether. This places a great onus on the client side application to not only handle remote control events quickly, but to also inform the end user (provide visual feedback) when a remote key press has been successfully received. Choppy glitches, slow loading times and questionable transitions make the user bored and often break them out of the immersive experience. As always the inclusion of—at the very least—“Please Wait” or “Loading...” screens must be included for slow tasks to inform the user that the application is handling the users request (i.e. Tasks which take more than a second to perform).


Openness. The UI as an instantly changeable component is now a must. Look for this feature soon as SkinTonesTM will soon start to play just as important a role to the TV application as the ring tone to a mobile phone. Custom applications, which can be developed in-house or by a 3rd party, and which may be downloaded and seamlessly integrated into the offering are major features that protect against the evolving requirements of the end users.


Changing the look of the UI (re-skinning) is no longer changing the colour scheme of the UI. Skinning is not merely swapping images within the UI, and skinning is not resizing or moving around UI elements. Skinning is a complete change of style. Skinning is a complete change of interaction paradigm. Skinning is even a change of application availability/accessibility and may include a change of the TV format and UI resolution (NTSC, PAL, 720p etc.). The most important piece of information to take home about re-skinning is that it must not involve a reboot of the STB. This is now completely unacceptable as PC and cell-phone applications have mastered this art years ago.


Third party applications will play an important role in initial IPTV deployments. Expecting a client-side application framework to guess what all of the hot next-generation applications will be is inconsistent. Expecting a client-side application framework to provide a mechanism to integrate third-party applications into their offering is a must. Look for client-side solutions that provide the freedom, and quality APIs, to allow for SIs and major operators to easily develop and deploy client side applications to handle MMS, Caller-ID, file-sharing and other components that may not otherwise be explicitly offered.


Data-Driven.  Internet based 'request and wait' mechanisms for data retrieval have given many users 'Refresh' and 'Reload' mentalities. The industry has the opportunity to avoid these frustrating paradigms in the world of IPTV... and the solution to the problem is data-driven everything. Old school client-side IPTV middleware offerings will often provide EPG or VoD data through HTML pages generated on a web server. This paradigm results in frustrating wait times at the client end and generates mass amounts of network traffic when users browse TV program listings or VoD libraries.


The time to act is now. Do not forget with what you are competing in this area. The benchmark for the 'Interactive UI' is quickly trending towards Microsoft and its ten million XBox 360's in the market. This is the behemoth of the high-end client-side device for the IPTV industry. With three, 3.2 GHz CPU cores this leviathan will dazzle users with performant high-definition UIs capable of vector-based animations, on-the-fly anti-aliasing and the potential of three-dimensional next-generation concepts.


Obviously, John Doe will not purchase an Xbox 360 or any other high-end $400 STB purely for IPTV. Nor will a major telco cough up these figures per user to promote rapid adoption. You, your clients and your suppliers may be targeting more common consumers who are more than willing to bring affordable STBs into their home to take advantage of the revolution that IPTV will bring to the world. Your deals will beat out the Microsoft solution when your client-side offering is performant and responsive; when it is open, fast, and data-driven. The cost-effectiveness of these solutions, when using the right client-side middleware with the right mix of convergent applications, will win over the large telcos of the world and attract those high-end IPTV adopters to your content. Look for the one for you; the solutions are in the marketplace today.


--Jason McCormack



The Dog Days of Winter

January 5, 2007 1:45 PM | 0 Comments

Normally at this time of the year everyone sits back, takes a hard look at themselves and says, okay, time to make a change. We use January 1 as the time to reflect and resolve to be more active, get more things done, and achieve more with our time.

What I hear is "blah blah blah."

Right after New Year’s Eve, I am done with entertaining, wining (not whining), dining and spending. What I really want most in the world is a little peace and quiet, a few walks with my dog in the sun…and a little bit of quality relaxation.

I, like many people, watch TV to relax, zone out, drain my brain…

Extrapolating my current cable experience to the future IPTV experience I expect to have, means that I need 100% entertainment…no channel fade, no quality loss, no service outages. (Remember, I didn’t say I’d stop whining in 2007!) In an operator’s strive to take IPTV live, keeping quality of service front of mind needs to be a number one concern.

From the results of the last IPTV Channel poll, it looks like a strong quality of experience might be in our collective IPTV future as only a few respondents said it was a major hurdle to delivering wide-scale roll-outs. Excellent! The majority of respondents said they most needed modular and open middleware (may I suggest you look at . Next on the 100-channel hurdle list was the need for wide-scale broadband access. Makes sense. Last on the list was the need for low-cost STBs…looks like the industry’s manufacturers have been filling the bill.

So…gotta go, I’ve PVR’d the O.C., and it waits for no one but ME.

Happy New Year! And don't forget to answer the IPTV Channel Poll and let us know what country you think will have the most IPTV subscribers by the end of this year.


Let me start by stating: if you think designing for the Web and the TV should follow the same blueprint, you’re wrong. Designing for the Web and TV are extremely different processes and every person within the IPTV industry should know that a design for the Web doesn’t automatically translate to the TV.

The main difference between designing for the TV and the Web is simply the medium of delivery. The process of designing for both can be fairly simple if certain sets of guidelines are followed. However, if it is looked upon as 'just another interface design project' instead of an ‘overall TV experience’ the project can snowball into a tedious and never-ending process. IPTV is a totally different medium; with experience and requirements that are very distinct. A designer should understand the critical difference in these mediums of delivery to fully design a user interface that will attract audiences and increase interactions with their chosen medium.

To design and create a compelling user experience, a designer requires a clear understanding of both the context and the target audience. In the case of TV, the audience is the viewer who watches television to relax and be entertained. For this very reason, TV design has to be extremely simple, linear and easy to follow. This limits distraction and doesn’t allow the viewer to shift their focus from watching TV to another form of entertainment. This experience has been coined the "Sit Back Approach". You can compare that to the “Lean In” experience, which means direct interaction with something, such as using a computer. The TV experience is a shared, entertaining experience. It is less of an interactive experience and more of an immersive interaction. A user decides to use the interface, only when a decision has been made to change something on the TV. This means that any activity performed as a part of interface interaction is secondary to watching of the TV. Needless to say, designing the user experience for TV goes beyond physical issues of resolution, pixel grid, Standard and High definition or palette configurations.

But get ready for even more change now because Interactive IPTV is all about involvement. A designer is attempting to convert the "Sit Back Approach" into an active experience by giving the user complete control of their entertainment choices. The key thing to remember here is that the quality of experience (QoE) needs to be very consistent and stimulating. The key difference between the experiences of Digital TV versus the experiences of IPTV is the interaction. And this interaction is increased by the number of services that can be accessed. For example, a viewer can surf through a plethora of programs that are available to them at any given time. While doing so, the TV watcher can also place a voice call or IM their friends for a quick conversation about their favorite programs. While doing so, they can place an order for pizza and invite friends over for a bite. All this can be achieved just while relaxing on a couch, at the touch of a remote. This is precisely why IPTV gives a whole new meaning to "Immersive Experience". It can thus be maintained that successful interaction is born from a concept that intrinsically enhances the experience through its content.

Here are a few simple steps (The Basics of Experience Design) as applied to creating the best IPTV experience:
1. Understand and reflect on product/client requirements.
2. Ensure that the conceptual and functional specifications are as detailed as possible.
3. Sketch and Draw - Invest a significant amount of time white-boarding concepts and thinking of every possible element, scenario etc. so you can prepare an acceptance test plan.
4. Storyboard the concepts. This will allow you to easily take your client / potential viewer through the concept. At this same time, this will also help you discover your own mis-steps. As in any design process, navigation will dictate how the experience will be perceived and used. It is therefore important for the designer to solidify the navigation at this point.
5. Once the basics are ready, the designers can focus their attention on creative development. The most critical aspect to remember here is ATOT -- “Always Test on TV”. Whatever design concepts are implemented, make sure to transfer them from your computer screen and test them in the TV environment. What looks good on computer doesn't always look good on TV. Colors, proportions, scales and dimensions all vary largely from computer to TV. And remember that the viewing distance of TV versus the computer is different too. This will dramatically alter how the user interface is viewed and perceived on TV.
6. Finally as always, translating all this effort into a successful implementation is the most challenging task. As all designers will concur, the designs they create don’t always get translated exactly during implementation. Steps 1 through 5 will help you reduce that gap significantly and ultimately help to provide your TV viewers with what you have envisioned.
7. Needless to say, user testing, focus groups and other methods are the final items in this process. Make sure that you test with a variety of viewers within your target market. This will help you consolidate the design more succinctly.

Keeping things simple is a Design Mantra. What may seem like a really simple piece of interaction may ultimately prove to be a deciding factor of your product’s fate.

IPTV has a great future and it has a lot to do with its immersive QoE. But the ultimate judge for it though, will be the viewers who watch TV.

-Amit Tungare, UI Designer and TV Watcher Extraordinare

Pet Peeves of TV

December 13, 2006 2:35 PM | 1 Comment

For IPTV to be successful, it will need to solve some of the most common Pet Peeves of plain ordinary TV. My personal Pet Peeves include:

1) Bad channel search capabilities

2) Lousy and limited content

3) Unstable cable (VOD crashing, etc.)

4) Remote controls that are not powerful enough

5) Slowness of the interface, ugly interfaces, and clunky UI

6) Non-intuitive settings, confusing menus, etc.

7) Not child friendly

8) No personalization, no way to ulpoad content

9) Easy to use content filters (blocking porn, etc.)

10) No plug-and-play STB or easy set-up and maintenance

There are others, but I think some, or all, of these need to be fixed for IPTV to really be successful and differentiating. On quick glance, I believe 1, 2, 5, 6, 8 and 9 will be the easiest for IPTV to improve upon, if designed properly. The other challenges might take some more time, and may not be uniquely addressed by the capabilities of IPTV.

-Rob Nadon



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