The new television: Goodbye to traditional channel-hopping

Television was the means of communication par excellence of the twentieth century. Viewers were informed and thrilled by it. Mankind as a whole could watch live and direct paradigmatic events such as man landing on the moon. Today, the reality of that screen that shaped our lives for so long has changed for ever. Internet has radically modified the way we consume audiovisual content.

If television needed thirteen years to reach 50 million viewers, the web has passed that figure in less than four. The revolution that the web has brought about in the media ecosystem affects audiences, and both content and media have to be reconfigured around the new communicational framework designed by the web.

Anytime, anywhere

In the new context of television online, the place and time are no longer problems when it comes to watching a film, a series or a television programme of any kind. There are online platforms, such as Netflix and Hulu, that have video streaming transmission services for various devices that are connected to Internet, from the TV itself to a mobile phone, tablet or notebook.

In the case of Netflix, by paying a monthly quota users can access all of the site’s content, which is the result of deals with various TV channels. Hulu, for its part, was created by NBC and Fox to offer online video streaming, and the programming of both channels is included. These services, which are the most important in North America, are still not available all over the world, but they are undoubtedly setting a consumer trend in online audiovisual content consumption.

YouTube is still the king

Every time television broadcasts something which has a big impact, it can be quickly found on YouTube. The platform owned by Google has undoubtedly become the main channel for sharing those moments worth talking about. And not only is what happens on television on YouTube; audio from important radio programmes, or homemade videos that users want to share are available to.

But talking about YouTube as if it were just a channel to upload and share videos is a step backwards. The platform has become the ideal way of carrying out online marketing and, little by little, it is moving into to the transmission of live events market.

With this objective YouTubeLive was born which enables the viewing of transmissions in real-time. On visiting the site, surfers can see the broadcasts currently available and see the programming schedule of events that will be broadcast during the following seven days. These events can be marked on the Google calendar, and an email reminder of the transmission can be sent. The site also has an archive of past events in case the viewer hasn’t been able to see a particular transmission.

Smart television

The new Smart TV technology is now on sale around the world and was developed especially to consume available online content via television. Global companies such as Samsung, Sony and Phillips are setting the trend in the development of this new phenomenon, launching onto the market their new Smart televisions. Using these devices we can also surf Facebook, Twitter and Google Maps.

Smart televisions are connected to the Internet via their own operating system and access television programmes via streaming which offers excellent quality reproduction. What’s more, the devices concentrate most of the activities that can be performed on the web, enabling content searches and access to applications.

With the different players in the market battling it out to present the latest innovations in the audiovisual sector, the way of consuming and producing content is changing dramatically. In the past, video broadcasting was restricted by television channel schedules and the limitations of home media players. Today, users can consume an almost unlimited quantity of content on their computers, smartphones, tablets or their Smart TVs.

According to a study by the eMarketer consultancy, by 2015, 60% of Americans will be consuming video online. So, traditional television will become a thing of the past, and we will access a wider variety and quantity of audiovisual content through different devices connected to the web.