The IP&TV World Forum 2011 kicked off in London today, with the show going through something of a name change (note the ampersand) - a small but significant change that points to how IPTV is currently being perceived by manufacturers.
Speaking at the event was Giles Wilson, head of technology for Ericsson TV, who explained that the companies which will win the IPTV battle will be those who can not only deliver online content to multiple screens but the same content to all screens in the home – whether that be on your smartphone, tablet or big-screen TV.
"If content providers want to take advantage of portable devices, they need to break out of the verticals and deliver the same service to all devices," said Wilson.
"The operators that can rise to that challenge will be the ones that win overall."
Wilson explained that in an ideal situation a consumer would begin watching a movie in the home, then take it with them on their mobile device – starting where they finished on the TV.
No cord cutting
This seamless transition is something that many content providers are struggling with, but Wilson thinks that it will be beneficial to consumers and open up new avenues for content distributors.
"We see consumers use smartphones and tablets for consuming media everyday, but what we don't see is a movement from linear TV consumption to the portable side.
"There is no cord cutting just yet, they are not replacing TVs but filling a hole that wasn't used before.
"This is attractive as it is a new avenue of consumption for consumers and providers."
Wilson summed up saying: "What consumers want to do is move on to an 'experience oriented' service, where a single service is available across all devices.
"This blending is key."
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Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, Shortlist.com at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.