Yahoo! Poised to Stand Out in OTT Content Platform Field < Streaming

Yahoo! Connected TV via http://connectedtv.yahoo.com/newsroom/images Copyright © 2010 Yahoo! All rights reserved.
Dan Rayburn posted a list of content platforms servicing the ever increasing landscape of web connected devices, including

  • HDTV displays
  • Blu-Ray Players
  • internet appliances

Not to mince words, but Netflix, Blockbuster On Demand, CinemaNow, and especially Best Buy should be considered channels.  Feel free to throw Amazon Video On Demand into that bunch.  Through its strategic alliance with Tivo, Best Buy is starting to blur the line, but for the most part all of these brands drive business through partnerships with home entertainment studios to distribute premium content online.

That leaves online video players beyond YouTube, such as:

to form partnerships directly with one of the platforms on Dan’s list.  And that list can be further broken down into

Internet Appliances with a Walled Garden of Apps

Internet Appliances specializing in over-the-top (OTT) content, with a more Open Door to the Store policy:

Broadband connected hardware platforms becoming Internet Appliances, driving incremental or alternate revenues streams through target advertising:

Software platforms offering software development kits (SDK), running on multiple OEM devices.

The two most interesting platforms on the Mr. Rayburn’s list are DivX TV and  Yahoo! Connected TVDivX runs a proprietary codec, similar to Vudu, and while they also made noise at CES, the nod goes to Yahoo!  since their CES fanfare included so many hardware partners:

As the center of people’s online lives, Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) today furthered the company’s Connected TV leadership by globally expanding the availability of the Yahoo! Widget Engine. New partnerships with Hisense, ViewSonic, MIPS Technologies, and Sigma Designs will dramatically increase the availability of the Yahoo! Widget Engine, delivering compelling TV Widget experiences to more televisions and other consumer electronic devices which will begin shipping as soon as Q1 2010. Yahoo! TV Widgets now work on all major consumer electronic device chip architectures worldwide.

via Yahoo! Inc. – Press Release.

Not only are they based on open standards, but in addition to HDTV displays, Yahoo! Widgets span

  • customized web pages 
  • PC desktops
  • mobile devices

Then you take a look at Yahoo! Widgets already available, including content distribution channels

  • Amazon
  • Blockbuster
  • CinemaNow

even YouTube, interestingly enough.  Add social media heavy hitters to the equation:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Flickr

You can even find a hardware partner for Rovi, as Engadget reports the TV Guide widget is their handiwork.  A list of Yahoo! Widget capable devices and SDK sign up may be found here .  Below is a video of the Yahoo! Widget Engine from CES.  If you’re like Mr. Rayburn, looking for consolidation and can’t wait until 2011 for things to shake out as Mike Berkley hopes, bet on Yahoo! for your Home Theater.  Happy viewing.

via YouTube – yahoo’s Channel
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