The future is downloadable over the air

Back in 2004, I would do a blog post about IPTV (or TVIP), by which I meant video delivered over IP. I said someday TV over IP would radically change television. People would watch all kinds of programs that weren’t available from networks, and a lot of traditional TV and movies would be available, too. A critic said I was crazy. The pipe would never be big enough. I said the pipe didn’t matter because everything would be time-shifted. We’re not talking about watching streaming TV the way cable delivers it (and what Microsoft and PacBell meant by IPTV), but downloads for later viewing.
And now we have the likes of Joost and AppleTV and Netflix and gobs of quality vlogs along with plenty of other IP video offerings. It’s still early in the revolution, but things are changing fast.

Also in 2004, I spoke at an API conference on mobile and said “someday you’ll get broadband to your mobile device — anywhere, anytime.” I didn’t know how this would happen, but it only seemed logical that it would. And it would radically change the way people consume news and entertainment. People in the room far smarter than me about technology said it would never happen. It was an awkward moment, because I only had my belief and a few examples of radical experiments to make it happen (like big balloons beaming down IP signals to the ground).
Well, the FCC is getting ready to license 700 MHz spectrum, and if it is a truly open system, I think John Battelle is right: “This could mean we get the Internet in the air. I mean, the real Internet. Wow.”

Wow, indeed.

It’s hard to imagine, fully, how that will change things.

But video will be a big part of the mobile broadband future.

The iPhone is already a pretty incredible mobile video device.

Somebody recently reminded me about this post on change.

Here’s a competitive advantage, if you can harness it: Be ready for change.

By change, I don’t just mean things will be different. I mean change as a constant state.

Are you ready for change?

Speaking of trips down memory lane, check out this Digital video about the internet in 1994. It’s exceptionally prescient about how things will change.

1 thought on “The future is downloadable over the air

  1. The iPhone is going to change mobile video forever. Now that people have a great media device, that happens to also be their phone–which they will always have on them.

    This is huge. As the iPhone user base grows, a great market for mobile video will emerge.

    Apple is getting ready to update QuickTime to regain it’s place in the video delivery world. Apple got YouTube, which made Flash video what it is today, to convert to H.264. Repeat that a few times.

    We at are very excited about the future of mobile video. We’ve been supporting the iPod with Video from day one. Now that the mobile video audience is set to explode we are ready to deliver great content.

    Brian Andrews

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