What is “TV Everywhere,” really?


There has been a lot of discussion over “TV Everywhere,” the service option being launched by many of the pay TV operators, including Verizon, AT&T, Comcast and others; which allows pay TV subscribers to access programming via the Internet. DISH also has been using this term, in reference to its Sling-enabled devices.

I haven’t really heard of it being characterized in this way, but isn’t TV Everywhere simply another example of a supplier (in this case, a supplier of programming to consumers) finding a new and ready distribution channel (broadband Internet access) and harnessing it in order to remain an option for some would-be cable-cutters, and maybe attract some people that aren’t on their service at all, in the process?

TV Everywhere was topic of a panel discussion at the NCTC Independent Show, and blogged about by Bernie Arnason, co-founder of TelcoTV, on his Telecompetitor blog. The point was made that “over the top” (OTT) video should be differentiated from TV Everywhere because OTT disintermediates the pay TV provider while TV Everywhere is a pay TV service. So when a pay TV provider refers to extending its own service package over the Internet, it should have a different name – and “Under the Bottom” was suggested. Semantics aside, whatever “TV Everywhere” is, the point that it’s different from OTT is well taken.

It’s understandable that Avail TVN, a “wholesale” supplier of pay TV programming to Telcos and other operators, would feel this way about it. In their case, TV Everywhere is another way to position their TV programming, so it would appeal to operators that may never do a facilities-based IPTV solution.


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