Copyright © 2012 Richard Beaty
I’ve got some updated news on Internet TV this month. So, let’s call this issue: Internet TV Revisited.
Paid YouTube Subscriptions? It Could Happen.
YouTube has been in business for less than 8 years. It seems like a lot longer than that, doesn’t it? In that time, they’ve created a video streaming juggernaut. They currently stream over 4 billion – that’s BILLION with a “B” – videos daily. Think about it … 4 billion today, 4 billion tomorrow, 4 billion the day after that. Try to imagine the Internet band width they have to have.
YouTube currently makes money through paid advertising, both on their Website and on the up-front ads on some of their videos. But with all the traffic they get and the popularity of YouTube videos, it’s only natural for them to explore other avenues of revenue creation.
On June 14, a YouTube executive announced that they were looking into offering paid subscriptions for certain programming. Details are sketchy and it’s not even for sure that this will happen. But my guess is that it will. Paid subscriptions will probably be for only select programs, including some small cable channels that are looking into YouTube as a means of distributing their content. YouTube may also charge to access some of their original programming channels.
I do not look for the overall character of YouTube to change. There will probably just be a menu of paid subscription offerings that you can sign up for if you wish. As a consumer, I think that’s good. It shows the Internet TV option is healthy and developing new ways to become economically viable.
I’m Teaching a Class on Internet TV
On September 19 of this year, I’m teaching a class entitled “Streaming TV.” This class is offered by the SaddleBrooke Computer Club, and you must be a member of the club to attend. Attendance is limited to the first 16 people who sign up. If demand is great enough, I will consider offering the class again.
In this lecture and demonstration class I will:
- Identify sources of Internet TV content
- Review free and low cost services
- Compare hardware options for receiving and viewing streaming TV
- Lay out the equipment and cabling diagrams for the ultimate streaming entertainment center
The class is not available for enrollment yet, and it probably won’t be until sometime in August. When enrollment does go live, you will be able to sign up from the “Course Enrollment” link on the Computer Club Website: www.saddlebrookecc.org. Again, you must be a member of the SaddleBrooke Computer Club to enroll for this class. See the “Club Membership” link on the Computer Club website.
Update on FreeTVconnection.com
In the April issue of Tools, Toys and Technology, I announced the launching of my new product: FreeTVconnection.com. Since then, the site has grown with lots of new programming and users.
FreeTVconnection.com is basically an index to free TV on the Internet. Consider it a “search engine” specifically for online video. You can list programs alphabetically and by genre, and you can search for specific titles. This is a fee-based membership site that gives you lifetime access to all the programs and channels on the site (currently 150 and growing). Yes, even I am looking for ways to get in on the streaming TV revolution.
HOW CAN YOU WATCH THE SHOWS ON FREETVCONNECTION.COM?
FreeTVconnection.com is a normal Website with links to other Websites with free streaming TV shows. So you can certainly watch the shows on your computer. But you can also watch on your TV by connecting your computer to your TV with an HDMI cable. I won’t repeat the whole procedure here, but for more information on the “how-to,” see my April article in this blog. You can also review a cabling diagram on how to set up all your Internet TV devices.
HOW’S THE VIDEO QUALITY?
Well, it’s not HD for sure. And depending on the source, some of it is pretty bad, especially on a big-screen TV. But I consider myself a videophile, and I can tell you that I really enjoy watching some of the classic TV shows you’ll find on this site that are not readily available anywhere else.
That said, some of the sources stream a quality that you’ll find quite acceptable, considering it’s streaming over the Internet direct to your computer, without any special “black box” to enhance the signal.
WHAT CAN YOU WATCH ON FREETVCONNECTION.COM?
Everything from classic TV shows like “Gunsmoke,” one of my all-time favorites, to more recent classics like “Monk” and “Boston Legal.” But rather than list over 150 of them here, go check it out for yourself by going to www.FreeTVconnection.com and clicking on the “Free TV Index” link at the top of the page.