Roku: We're Only Scratching the Surface with Streaming TV
Streaming video has come far, but the real obstacle is people's established TV viewing preferences.
While new video content is coming online everyday, one Roku exec thinks we still have a long ways to go. Speaking at the recent Streaming Media West conference in Los Angeles, Roku vice president of marketing Chuck Seiber said there's much potential ahead. What's holding us back are people's established viewing habits.
"It still feels like we're really scratching the surface in terms of the potential of streaming platforms on television," said Seiber. "There's a lot of things people love about the experience, but it's hard to change people's behavior. As it turns out, people are pretty comfortable watching TV a certain way. Very established behavior and it's pretty hard to change that."
When people do turn to streamed content, Seiber believes they find the experience more satisfying.
"We think of the TV experience as being purposeful, in the sense that for most of our customers - there are some exceptions, of course, there are times when you just want something on in the background - but as far as watching television I think there's a strong sense that one of the benefits of streaming is you can, theoretically, find what you want to watch. If it's something you chose beforehand, as opposed to stumbled upon, then you're more likely to watch it through and you're going to feel like, whether it was a good movie or a bad movie, it was your choice, so it was better than perhaps the alternative," Seiber noted.
For more on the rise of streaming television, watch the panel discussion below.
ROUND TABLE: Smart TV or Dumb TV?
The TV industry operates on perpetually shrinking margins, and each year seeks out the "hot new thing" that will increase revenue, decrease buying cycles, and otherwise help contribute to the bottom line. In the era of smart TVs, however, consumers have a challenging value proposition today, with limited features and built-in fear of future obsolescence. Our group of consumer electronics pros has a hearty discussion to get to the bottom of what should be done with smart TVs. Do people want them, or do they just want "feature" TVs? Will fragmentation kill the industry before it even really gets off the ground? Is smart the new 3D or the new HD?
Moderator: Jeremy Toeman, CEO, Dijit
Speaker: Kurt Hoppe, Director, Smart TV Innovation, LG
Speaker: David Schlacht, SR Director, Multimedia, DirecTV
Speaker: Chuck Seiber, VP, Marketing, Roku
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Also, Roku gains six "Roku Ready" partners and announces it has over 700 channels available.
Known for its set-top boxes, Roku will use the money to move beyond the box and into new integrations.
What set-top box gets the most use? It's Roku by a long shot, says a Parks Associates survey.