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Podcast #825: Predictions for 2018

Time for the HT Guys to look into our crystal ball and try and predict the HDTV and Home Theater landscape for 2018. Our crystal ball isn’t as clear as a good HDTV but we faithfully give it another shot nonetheless.

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Predictions for 2018

Time for the HT Guys to look into our crystal ball and try and predict the HDTV and Home Theater landscape for 2018. Our crystal ball isn’t as clear as a good HDTV but we faithfully give it another shot nonetheless.

Voice User Interface will begin to flourish in Home Theater

It's 2018 and we are very used to asking Siri, Alexa, or Google to turn on lights but it's not common that we can use our voice to control our home theaters. The Echo works with the Harmony and Simple Control remotes but it's still kind of limited. In 2018 we will see a Homekit like framework emerge that will allow disparite home theater devices to be controlled by voice.

IPTV begins to erode traditional cable/satellite product

Both DIsh Network and DirecTV said that their IPTV products we not replacements for their traditional offerings. Their original target market was cord cutters. The over the top service was an attempt to win back younger TV viewers. What is actually happening is that high dollar subscribers are seeing the value in IPTV. Watch anywhere and just about any device. The providers no longer have to worry about installing and maintaining hardware. A true win/win! Look for service quality to improve in 2018 and that will speed up the transition. The process will take many years to complete but 2018 will be the starting point.

The forthcoming Disney Movie Service gives Netflix a run for the money

Netflix is a streaming movie service that now creates original content making for a formidable force. Disney has been creating original content for years and now is getting into the streaming game. They have deep pockets and can buy up a lot of content and be the only service that will stream it. We are betting that Disney makes a big dent into Netflix’s market share in 2018

Netflix will change the movie distribution model

Netflix currently operates on both sides of movie distribution. Netflix Productions already works with theaters to distribute traditional motion pictures, they secured distribution rights to Kumail Nanjiani’s The Big Sick for example. Netflix is also one of the largest producers of motion pictures, in fact Netflix will release more movies in 2018 than most major film studios combined. Most of them will go straight to streaming. But will they all? Netflix will get some of those movies into theaters and make them available for streaming at the same time.

(Longshot Prediction) DirecTV will lose it's stranglehold on the TV rights for streaming the NFL

For years the only way to watch out of market games for the NFL was to buy DirecTV’s Sunday Ticket. That also gave you access to stream the games when you weren’t at home. But with declining viewership due to how we watch TV nowadays the NFL will have to do something about it. They are making inroads with streaming on Twitter and facebook. But look for the NFL to offer something like what all the other sports do, an NFL package that will allow you to stream any and all out of market games to your set top box, tablet, and phone of your choice. Then when DirecTVs contract is up, look for every platform to offer a Sunday Ticket like product.

4G Optimized Streaming for the Home

We still aren’t sure if the removal of Net Neutrality will have any impact on our ability to stream from video services that may compete with the company that provides your Internet access, but there are potential issues there. And with 4G speeds in many areas easily capable of streaming high definition, we’ll see a push toward using a new 4G device in your home, optimized for video streaming, combined with one of the streaming TV services (AT&T and DirecTV Now, perhaps?) to totally eliminate the need for cable or satellite altogether. Maybe you could have a second 4G device in the home is what you could use for all the Internet and email traffic.



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