Hollywood -- In the interactive future, consumers will want
their services packaged, rather than a la carte, according to a survey of cable
subscribers due out next month.
Speaking at the Digital Entertainment Summit sponsored by
Kagan Seminars Inc., former The Jayne Group president and CEO Camille Jayne last week
outlined some results from her nationwide survey. The full study will be released at the
CTAM Digital and PPV Conference in Los Angeles in March.
The national study, sponsored by a consortium of companies
with interests in cable and interactive services, aimed to find out which interactive
applications consumers really want -- and which they would be willing to pay for.
Subscribers from every major MSO were surveyed.
Although news, weather, sports, shopping and travel scored
high in the survey, 'nobody is interested in anything a la carte,' Jayne said.
'Packaging is very important when you're talking about content in interactive.
We found out that people will pay more when you put it in packages.'
The survey also discovered that consumers want true
Internet access over their televisions. But Jayne said cable operators may fear that
offering full Internet access would hurt their core business.
The majority of people surveyed said they wanted to use a
device for televised e-mail that looks more like a remote control, rather than a keyboard,
Jayne said, 'but that's because we asked people who watch television.'
Over the next few years, hand-held devices will take on
aspects of electronic programming guides, Jayne said. The EPG could show up on a screen in
the remote itself, so that the guide's display wouldn't have to interfere with
anything that a consumer is watching on television.
Consumers were split over whether they preferred to buy or
rent such hand-held devices, Jayne said. She indicated that consumers said they were
willing to spend $75 to $200 to own the sophisticated remote controls, or that they would
pay $5 to $15 in monthly fees to rent. Some even said that they wanted to rent with an
option to buy.
'With all of this going to retail in the next three to
four years,' Jayne said, 'there's going to be a lot of money in
peripherals. They'll be revenue-generators.'