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Industry ponders the future of television

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Ten years from now television as a device and a medium won’t exist, according to one of the predictions from screen industry executives in a new report. Understandably, reps from the free-to-air networks reject that notion while others aren’t sure how and where content will be consumed in 2025. The Swinburne Institute for Social Research interviewed 25 people including execs from FTA and pay TV, IPTV, production companies, social media and audience measurement.

The findings are published in the report TV 2025: Reconsidering small screen media in Australia by Swinburne’s Jock Given, Michael Brealey and Cathy Gray. The interviewers asked: In 2025, will there still be something we call ‘television’?

Yahoo!7 head of product Arul Baskaran responded, “If there is, it’ll be dramatically different from the way the word television is understood now. Right now, ‘television’ is a medium, a format and a device. As a format – the content we call television – it has the most endurance. We recognize this content whether we watch it on the plane or on the iPad or on a television set, right? But as a device and as a medium, I think television as we know it is going to disappear.

“We’ll probably have ambient screens or paint-on screens or whatever in our living rooms. I don’t think there will be a set called a television sitting there.”

ABC director of TV Richard Finlayson referred to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings’ controversial prediction that broadcast television would be gone by 2030.

Finlayson said, “ I thought that was interesting, because it also may well be the natural conclusion of our next set of terrestrial transmission deals. It’s 15 years away, but it does feel like that is a point at which you’re going to see a really significant change in the way broadcast TV works. It will shift almost completely to an IPTV platform. It doesn’t mean there won’t be a terrestrial service that supports all that, but the IP model will be the dominant one.”

Read the entire story here.

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