Are we ready for Smart TVs?

There are a lot of words in the web about Smart TVs. And according to some studies it seems that the market is more and more growing.

After reading Mitch Joel‘s “Are consumers smart enough for Smart TV?” I decided to write this post (it’s also an answer to Mitch Joel) because as Mitch writes there are some misunderstandings about the use of Smart TV.

I am a fan of technology as a enabler allowing me to do things I could not do without it. For this reason I have no problem to learn what a new technology can do. I have a PS3, a Sky decoder and a Samsung Dongle (a wifi box which allows me to project on tv my Samsung Galaxy S3 contents) connected to my “dumb” Panasonic and with them I can watch different kind of contents. When you get used to it, watching a tv series, a documentary, a film, a YouTube video it is quite easy and satisfying.

Even if I consider myself an average man in my 40’s I can understand that many people may occur some problems in building an ecosystem like mine.

In my opinion the main problems are two:

  1. People don’t like changing habits. It means that if I have always been watching television in a linear way (or with VTR) learning new ways of watching contents can’t be so easy. There are also people who take hours to surf through tons of contents just wasting time and then they decide to watch linear tv.
  2. In order to have many contents to watch, a Smart Tv with proprietary software and with some agreements for contents and maybe a set-top box can’t be enough. What happens if my Smart TV can’t access to Netflix and I want to watch House of cards? There is no standard till now and if we want to watch many different contents we need more devices connected to tv.

That said I agree with Veronica Thayer, tv system analyst at IHS, and I think most of the people buying Smart Tvs are buying just a tv (today it’s not very easy to buy a television that is not smart).

The market will grow but before Smart Tvs will be used in a smart way we have to wait for some more days, maybe when gesture and voice recognition will be our remote control.

Mattia Nicoletti

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