The Internet-ization of Television by Elizabeth Martinez

With the growing popularity of Internet TV and On Demand services, many are asking if this is the end of movie rental shops and the cause of the decrease in people’s interest in watching live TV. Netflix, Apple TV, and even cable companies’ On Demand services have seen growing numbers within the past couple of years, and experts believe they’re not going down.

Nielsen, an American global information and measurement company, did a July survey of 2,000 consumers, half of whom use Netflix. The survey estimated that 38% of Americans use or subscribe to Netflix, 18% use Hulu, and 13% use Amazon Prime Instant Video. The numbers may not seem buzz worthy but, Netflix saw a 31% increase, Hulu’s numbers are up by 12%, and Amazon has nearly doubled their used to be 7% since last year alone. Netflix, the world’s largest video subscription service, reported their third quarter results a couple of weeks ago and are set to beat out HBO with their 31 million subscribers.

There is a hike in consumers watching TV shows and movies on their smart phones, tablets, laptops, and televisions; the attraction is easy to see. It is viewers’ favorite original series, and reruns at their command; they can watch them wherever and whenever, whether it’s one episode, or multiple, with the new phenomenon of binge watching.

The growing popularity of TV, literally, at the tip of your fingertips has left anyone that wasn’t as technologically ahead of the game, in economic downfall. Blockbuster LLC, the video rental company, will close its remaining 300 U.S. stores by January and will end their DVD-by-mail service by the middle of next month. They first filed for bankruptcy in April of 2011, and were acquired by DISH network. Blockbuster as the corner movie store is no longer; but DISH is going to continue Blockbuster On Demand that, like Netflix, will stream movies and television shows to mobile devices, laptops, and tablets, as well as the average television.

The decades long shift from TV set on a schedule, to TV on viewers’ terms is quickly growing, making progress to a TV everywhere world.

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