Monday, January 26, 2015

Why is it so difficult to watch live T.V. on a mobile device

The other day I was out to brunch with my wife and I was trying to see if I could catch some of the Dallas vs Greenbay playoff game. We're both pretty big football fans and were very curious about who the Seahawks would be facing in the NFC Conference Championship. I was extremely frustrated by the fact that I could not find the game anywhere.

I understand that there are one off ways to watch football in particular. But what about T.V. in general. I'm curious as to why there's not an equivalent to a cable subscription for mobile. Yes, most cable providers offer some form of internet T.V. but there's two problems.

  • You're required to have a home cable subscription.
  • Not all programs are available, specifically most live sporting events.

It feels like this is an opportunity for big cable (or an upstart trying to break in) to move forward towards the actual future of television. Right now big cable is desperately trying to hold on to the past because it's lucrative. But as Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video are showing, people's television consumption habits are changing.

Here's an outline of what what I believe would be wildly successful in regards to the future of television.

  • Provide a streaming cable subscription that DOES NOT require a home account.
    • Make the service work with Android, Fire, iOS, and Windows mobile.
  • Offer ALL the same channels (Network TV, ESPN, Comedy Central, etc) available with classic cable.
  • Offer an upgrade to access the last full season of shows.
    • This will allow people to catch up on missed episodes.
    • This will allow people that prefer to binge watch shows to do so when the season is over.
  • Offer an upgrade to remove the commercials. I'd pay an extra $10 a month for 0 commercials.
  • Partner with Amazon and Netflix to license their original content.
  • Allow people to pay with Amazon payments. (full disclosure... I work for Amazon).
    • Chances are people already have an Amazon account with a credit card on file.
    • Allows a technology company that understands security to handle the important payment processing.
Something like this is bound to happen sooner or later. Why not now?

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