Intel’s plan to stream video to paying subscribers has been scaled back recently to satisfy channel owners, and its goal to introduce the service, called OnCue, by the end of this year has been scrapped, says the NY Times. Intel says it now hopes to introduce it in 2014.
AllThingsD reported last week that Intel Media has sought to bring on Amazon and Samsung as strategic backers as part of a plan to help keep the project alive. OnCue would feature a BBC iPlayer-like catch-up service, allowing consumers to watch anything they missed within the last seven or so days.
“Over the Top” video subscribers would be broadband customers of a wired provider (like Time Warner Cable) or a wireless provider (like Sprint).
Sony’s plan has been shrouded in mystery. Like Intel, it has yet to announce licensing deals for any channels — and without those deals, the companies have nothing. Sony has reportedly reached a preliminary Internet distribution deal with Viacom, whose networks include MTV, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central.
Earlier this year, Google showed interest in a so-called over-the-top TV service, too, but those talks have apparently cooled for the time being, reports the NY Times.
Charter Communications CEO Tom Rutledge is doubtful a “virtual MSO” will ever get off the ground. That’s because TV programmers are “not going to get any incremental customers out of it” by just shuffling subscribers from cable to Internet services. “If it’s a replacement service, it’s not incremental.”
“This time it is really true that content is king,” said Mike Vorhaus, the president of Magid Advisors, a unit of the media consulting firm Frank N. Magid Associates.