The TV Revolution Is Here, And It's Led By... Intel?

Google tried it and failed. Microsoft's spent years putting pieces in place with Xbox, but it hasn't gotten there yet. And if you believe the rumours, Apple's been working on it in secret for years. But the living room revolution we've been waiting for won't be coming from the big three, according to a report from TechCrunch.

It's Intel's turn at the plate, with a little set top box that will, allegedly, change the way we watch TV forever.

That Intel is interested in your living room is nothing new; the WSJ reported on the company's set-top box yearnings back in March. But details were scarce then, and early-stage rumours like that have the frustrating tendency of never being heard from again. This time, we've got details. And they seem promising.

It seems as though Intel's proposed subscription service wouldn't try to replace your current ISP outright — as the more radical approach sought by Apple has been rumoured to — but instead provide traditional channels (potentially in smaller, more affordable bundles), streaming services, and a smarter DVR that gives you access to any show that aired in the last 30 days (as opposed to the ones you remembered to record). Intel's also been working on face-recognition technology that could be used to serve up hyper-relevant ads based on who's watching what show which, if incorporated here, would place the set top box firmly in the creepzone.

So why would pay TV companies allow it? Partly because they're still retaining some control, but also — according to TechCrunch — they might not. Intel's reportedly planning to roll out the service a few markets at a time. If cable companies see good licensing income, it'll roll out more broadly. If not? Well, it was a nice try.

With CES just a week away, we should know more concrete details very, very soon. The most important of which is: does this even actually exist? Let's hope so. And that Apple and Microsoft and Google aren't far behind. [TechCrunch via Engadget]


Comments

    I love how big corporations see something that we have been enjoying mostly for free and bust a gut to try to find a way to get us to pay some sort of regular fee to them for it.

      It's not free. You pay by having to watch the ads. What Intel is trying to do is shake up the existing market to keep people watching the tv medium, lest they fall into the hands of other entertainment. You think those tv shows are free? Some tv shows are all ads, disguised as tv shows. Look at Masterchef - it's one big ad for Coles. Someone has to pay, free-to-air tv is like spamming, hoping that someone bites.

      Nothing is free in this world. Everything comes with a price. It's just you have been accustomed to paying it the old way. But I'd rather pay for tv entertainment the way I want it vs the way they want to show it to me.

        Thing is, we'll still be inundated with endless streams of advertising/advertainment (such as Masterchef, that you mentioned) with this new model. Take Foxtel, or Xbox Live; paid for services now overrun with advertising. I really can't see this turning out any differently.

    lets face it though... the whole 'app market' model is a happening thing...
    there'll be out of the box style content which will be subscription-based, but at the end of the day the success will be dependant on the users' ability to customize their own content.

    cable companies licensing it? im guessing the cost will be absorbed by ad-supported content. nothing new here... come at me zoosk!

    Bring it on Intel. Bring it on! Also, with Intel getting serious about Graphics technology, it's going to be an awesome ride. It's going to be INTEL vs Nvidia, and the fruits of their labour will be searing your retina, with delicious eye candy.

    (and no, AMD will go bankrupt and be absorbed... if only they went with the ATI branding...)

    Streaming can't take off in Australia until the NBN is rolled out completely.

    Sorry to burst the bubble.

      And they have unlimited. US/UK...most other places they market this stuff to don't even know what data limits are.

        Why? With H.265 needing about 5Mbps for Full HD, your average 500GB mid-range plan will be more than enough.

          except in aus mid range is more like 20-50gb

            You need to shop around me thinks.

              i know 2 people with over 50gb and theyve both only got 100gb

                In Canberra, queanbeyan and now Melbourne full unlimited in all 3

            This is true, my dad will only get us 50gb, where is if it were up to me I could use 50gb a day, if only there was amazing technology that didn't throttle everyone's bandwith, letting us all have unlimited data.

            TPG Unlimited $60 per month.

            $2 a day for unlimited internet access for the household, with download rates topping out around 1.2Mb/s on average.

            Looking on their website the price has gone up $20 since I got connected 18 months ago, that's not a small hike!

              The $60 includes line rental. Was the same price 2 years ago (I know I was on it)

            Wow, everyone missed the point there. The NBN won't even get to the majority till 2016....you don't think mid range will be at LEAST 500GB by then?

      implying you don't stream 1080p video on youtube with ease ?

        Are you kidding?? I can't even get 480p to stream reliably, and I live in suburbia, not some small town...

        But you tube is horrible flash video

          Their testing HTML5, I just checked.

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