Sunday, July 17, 2011

Your Age and Your Technology Linked

A recent conversation with a young lady tending bar at a local eatery prompts this week’s missive. As I was waiting for a lunch companion, I was speaking with a friend about how Apple had just announced that more than 15 billion Apps had been downloaded from the iTunes Store since it began a few years ago. That is “Billion” with a “B” and works out to more than 2 Apps for every person now living on the earth. The conversation was overheard by the bar tender who chimed in that she used several apps to just watch TV.

As the conversation progressed she related that she does not own a radio or a TV set but is an avid watcher of TV and listens to radio stations a lot. She does it all on her computer or digital mobile device. The young lady looked to be in her late 20s and is representative of a sea change in how we will all someday consume media. More and more of us are forsaking the cable, satellite or broadcast platforms and relying on the Internet for not only YouTube short videos but full length TV shows and movies. allows us to have customized “radio stations” that fit our changing moods and tastes. Many Public and Commercial TV programs can be watched on line.

For certain, the older you are the more likely you may be wedded to the more traditional forms of Radio and TV but, as sure as the VHS Tape and Cassette Audio disappeared from our media landscape, more of us will be using on line platforms and less and less using the traditional modes of delivery. Just ask a thirty year old.

This change in consumer behaviour poses lots of questions and issues. How will we pay for the programming if commercials can be deleted and skipped? When will we fill up the available band width that wireless internet requires? Will these new platforms prove reliable in emergencies and bad weather?

Perhaps the same questions were asked about the telegraph when it replaced the pony express or the steam engine when it replaced the horse.


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