Decipher's Nigel Walley: "The smart TV revolution is dead"

22 Jan 2014  |  David Pidgeon 
Decipher's Nigel Walley: "The smart TV revolution is dead"

Internet connected televisions - or smart TVs - have failed to spark a revolution for the sector, according to a leading industry consultant.

Speaking at MediaTel's CES Debrief on Tuesday, Decipher's managing director, Nigel Walley, said that the smart TV revolution has died because proprietary operating systems - from manufacturers such as LG and Samsung - have created a deeply fragmented market that leaves app developers little scope to experiment or keep pace with change.

The issue has been compounded, Walley said, by the fact that none of the TV platforms have been able to develop an operating system that is "credible".

Walley told Newsline that the key organisations making apps for smart televisions - such as ITV and Channel 4 in the UK - can't afford to keep experimenting alongside smart TV operators. In some cases it requires developing and releasing a new app each year, making it an expensive and slow venture for media owners.

As a consequence, ITV Player only operates on one 2012 Samsung model of smart television, according to Walley.

"LG had a few apps, but this year it's an entirely new operating system so they've had to build them all over again," Walley said. "It's causing mayhem."

Walley made his remarks during a debrief in central London that looked at the implications for media owners, advertisers and agencies following the International Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month. An event that traditionally showcases next generation technology in the TV market, many analysts have been cynical about the latest offerings from manufacturers.

Walley said that the priority now was to see the operating systems in smart televisions change if consumers are to see any real benefit.

"It's a completely fragmented market and no one now believes the future of smart TVs lies with proprietary operating systems. It's going to be Android, Windows or iOS.".

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SF bud, watcher, SV on 27 Jan 2014
“Walley asked thre right question, but his answer shows how little he looked under the cover. most companies are rallying around web and HTML5 standard to abstract the app framework. [i.e. as long as OS can support modern browser, there is no fragementation] LG's webOS and Smart TV alliance push for HTML5 and open web UX framework like enyo is based on that direction. Not technology like Enyo remove fragmentation within TV, it can also remove x-device fragementation. Enyo/HTML5 can run top of Chrome on PC and mobile as well. Mr. Walley, do brush up on basic technology, before you yell fire....”
Jon Hewson, Advertising Director, Rovi on 22 Jan 2014
“Nigel is absolutely right about the need for standard proprietary operating systems, but come on guys your headline isn't very "Smart" and doesn't reflect the context or the facts does it!”

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