Preparing for Unbundled Television

Last week’s big news about Netflix acquiring rights to a potentially big hit program prior to production – and in the process outbidding even HBO – ought to get our attention. Unbundled television is the future of television, and it’s a scary thought for those of us who’ve spent our lives exploiting the linear “broadcast” paradigm. No one would argue that unbundled consumption is THE current reality in the music world, and it’s just a matter of time before the same can be said of video. This won’t happen overnight (although it might seem that way one day), but what can we do now? How do we prepare for such a shift? That’s the essence of this essay.

Preparing for Unbundled Television

I believe this essay is especially important today and that you’ll use the information contained here to begin the unbundled discussion at your station.


  1. Netflix depends on someone else’s delivery system to get content to the viewer via the internet. AT&T has announced they will soon charge a fee to those users who exceed their arbitrary limits putting Netflix in the position of causing subscriber’s phone or cable bill to increase as they use Netflix content. The final result of the push-shove match will be interesting.

  2. I suspect Netflix and their ilk will ultimately win. The wired pipes are in competition with the wireless providers, and if AT & T and their ilk are too restrictive, you’ll see a lot of the new streaming content migrate more towards mobile devices.

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