VIDEO. Google Fiber’s plan to wire up Kansas City with broadband internet might include the introduction of old fashioned cable TV, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.
Google is considering a plan to offer paid cable-TV services to consumers, a move that could unleash a new wave of competition within the traditional TV business, writes the Journal.
Google has reportedly discussed distributing major TV channels from companies such as Walt Disney, Time Warner and Discovery Communications as part of the video service, though the discussions were exploratory and no final decisions have been made. Google hired former cable TV executive Jeremy Stern for talks with production companies, the newspaper said.
Google hopes to start operating its fibre internet in Kansas City early next year. A Google spokesperson released the briefest of statements in response to the Journal article. “We’re still exploring what product offerings will be available when we launch Google Fiber,” the statement said.
Broadband TV Views. The news that Google might want to offer traditional cable services over their pilot fibre network in Kansas City does not come as a surprise. The past few years cable proved to be a formidable broadband competitor to upcoming FTTH systems – thanks to the DOCSIS 3.0 technology.
With speeds theoretically up to 200 Mbps or even 300 Mps over coax cable, consumers have little incentive to upgrade to FTTH – even if fibre offers 1 Gbps up and download speeds. VOIP telephony is also part of cable’s triple play offer. So new FTTH operators have to offer the full bundle – and this includes traditional television.
It looks to us that the Kansas City project is just a learning process for the internet giant. They are trying to crack the TV market. With Google TV 1.0 they were not successful, Google TV 2.0 is just a second try. At the same time, they are beefing up YouTube’s offering with an investment of $100 million (€72.5 million) for non-traditional online ‘channels.’ At first look, an offer over which traditional programmers shouldn’t worry.
VIDEO – Google is considering a plan to offer paid cable TV services to consumers, a move that could unleash a new wave of competition within the traditional TV business. Sam Schechner has details on the Wall Street’s Journal’s Digits.