If you have not already read the 2010 Media Predictions recently published by Deloitte -- I recommend it highly. Leave it to a venerable firm with its feet on the ground to help me gain some perspective on the world we live in. I was shocked and swayed by several of their predictions and the common thread was: those of us in the tech industry should remember that the "other half" is really the "other 95%" and they are the customers. Here is what I mean:
Deloitte Predicts: "Linear's got legs: the television and radio schedule stays supreme"
What? There are people out there that still watch TV according to the schedule? I thought the DVR took over in 2007! Well it turns out that 90 percent of all TV is consumed according to the schedule and at the rate of between 20 and 30 hours per person per week. The DVR people only watch 90 minutes a week. So the schedule dominates.
Deloitte Predicts: "The shift to online advertising: more selective, but the trend continues"
Well this is an easy one -- online advertising is going to continue to take marketshare. Just when I am thinking that this is hardly a prediction they point out that by increase they mean going from 10% of the market to 15% over the next 2 years. With the overall market contracting, this is really not much of a change. Again, the web is cool, but advertising is a big industry and the web is still the infant.
Deloitte Predicts: "Publishing fights back: pay walls and micropayments"
They predict that all of the huff and puff around paying for written content on the web will fizzle this year -- I happen to agree.
Deloitte Predicts: "Video-on-demand takes off -- thanks to the vending machine"
Look out Netflix -- here comes the ...... vending machine? The prediction is that by the end of 2010 there will be 30,000 DVD vending machines in place and a capacity to deliver 1.5B DVDs per year. This is quite a number -- and even if it does come true it looks like it might at best match Netflix's rental volume. I suppose the question hinges on how to define Video-on-demand. Getting a DVD in the mail is hardly on-demand, but driving to the vending machine is not either. So this prediction is kind of a dud for me except that it reinforces the point I took away: when you look at the whole market -- things just are not changing that fast.
Do download the article. There were several other interesting points on eReaders, TV - Web convergence, Music, and 3D TV. It does not seem like the theme was intentional, but each prediction reinforced the point: even the most developed marketplace in the world is still dominated by relatively old technology. Plenty of room for expansion in our market -- as long as we can break out of selling only to our "half".