Who Needs a TV When There’s the Internet?

Katherine Bennett - June 26, 2009

Recently, most people made the switch to digital TV. It was either, buy a converter box, a new TV or switch to some form of cable television. However, for those who have a quality computer and a good internet connection, the switch may not have been necessary. Websites like Hulu and YouTube allow users to watch TV shows and movies online and I’m sure there will be more websites in the near future that will provide these same offerings.

Hulu launched last year in March. According to Wikipedia, “Hulu is a website that offers commercial-supported streaming video of TV shows and movies from NBC, Fox and many other networks and studios.” They were one of the first sites dedicated to showing full movies and TV shows. Hulu is becoming increasingly popular and it won’t be long before the technology comes out for people to view Hulu on their cell phone. People who own an iphone are already watching YouTube.

YouTube continues to add more offerings. Originally, it was a place to upload funny home videos as well as music videos. Now, companies can have their own YouTube channel and promote their products online. In fact, YouTube may be giving Hulu a run for its money because YouTube now offers a movie and a TV show channel.

Both YouTube and Hulu manage to have commercial(s) play at some point during your movie or TV show watching. At present, the YouTube movies seem to have the least amount of commercials. So far, YouTube only has 1 forced commercial (no option to skip or fast forward past the commercial) at the beginning of a movie. Hulu on the other hand has several forced commercials that play throughout the movie. Either way advertisers are incorporated.

Hulu and YouTube are only the beginning of TV watching on the internet. For big time advertisers and companies, this means that more TV advertising dollars will start shifting toward the internet. For smaller advertisers and companies, now is a good time to learn about video ads and participate while the price is low. Eventually, I think people will watch shows via the internet instead of on a television. It might sound strange, but one day our grandchildren may say, “What is a television?” Don’t laugh, I’ve asked people,” What’s an 8 track player?”

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