BBC has published a very interesting survey conducted by Motorola, which interviewed 2,500 people across Europe. Some important findings of the survey are:
- 45% of European broadband users were watching some television shows online, with the French being the most enthusiastic in consuming their favorite programmes via the web.
- 45% of respondents expect to be able to make video calls via their television by 2012.
- 35% wanted to be able to pause, rewind or fast forward live broadcasts.
According to Motorola’s Karl Elliott:
Viewers across Europe are no longer satisfied with fitting into schedules dictated by broadcasters and are turning to the choice and flexibility offered by TV over the internet. We are witnessing a nation of citizen schedulers who are in control of their entertainment, allowing them to watch what they want, how and when they want it.
BBC earlier this week announced its iPlayer service-which will launch later this year-allowing users to watch programmes like Doctor Who and EastEnders online.
Meanwhile two European IPTV services, Joost from the founders (Janus Friis and Niklas Zennström) of Kazaa and Skype and Babelgum from the founder (Silvio Scaglia) of Italian broadband firm FastWeb are gearing up to capitalize on this opportunity. Both these companies are backed by hardened serial entrepreneurs and have solid financial backing. Joost has managed to make some major content and advertisement deals. See our previous coverage of Joost here.
IPTV is certainly one area where Europe looks to triumph Silicon Valley. However the success of any offering in this area will depend on the content offered to viewers, which in turn will be determined by the media partnerships made by these startups.