On-demand is hot.
The Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing's Digital/PPV
and VOD Conference in Los Angeles drew 1,259 attendees this year, many of whom
heard content providers and cable operators speak glowingly about on-demand
It was one of the few trade shows to produce a year-over-year increase in
attendance: approximately 1,200 attended last year.
Discovery Networks U.S. previewed its multipart on-demand strategy, which
includes a paid 'Discovery On Demand' service; a 'Discovery Choice 10' package
of 10 free on-demand programs, rotated frequently; and a video encyclopedia.
Sony Pictures Entertainment is distributing VOD-movie content to In Demand
L.L.C., as well as backing Movielink, the new Internet movie-delivery
Although Sony Pictures Entertainment president and chief
operating officer Mel Harris said Movielink was partially designed to stop Hollywood from getting 'Napsterized,' he added that it presents an
offensive opportunity to take advantage of all broadband platforms.
Starz Encore Group LLC chairman John Sie warned, 'Cable must make good
strategic decisions' to protect its subscriber base from further
direct-broadcast satellite erosion by deploying on-demand services.
Cable has to capture 68 percent of all new digital-subscriber growth, Sie
said, 'or the cable base will erode. If cable only gets 50 percent market share,
it will lose 8 million basics.'
He added that SVOD is cable's hedge against satellite
personal-video-recorder technology, saying, 'I believe SVOD is far superior to