The Resurrection of the “Boob Tube”

Television viewers from around the world can certainly appreciate the way the “Boob Tube” has expanded not only its content by way of regular programming, but also its optional convenience of being able to access most programs at the viewer’s discretion. Gone are the days when it was imperative for television viewers to frantically race home from work in order to catch their favorite prime-time tv show at the exact moment it was to be aired or when the housewife had to postpone her housework during the only available airtimes for her favorite soap opera as to not miss one episode. Television viewing has become so advanced that not only do viewers no longer have to concern themselves with adjusting their own availability according to their favorite program schedules, they don’t even have to be present in front of a television screen to watch it.

VOD, or Video on Demand, has become the most popular (and most convenient) sought-out method for those who have a busy lifestyle and need to stay on-the-go, or even for those who just want to enjoy their favorite television programs and/or movies in the comfort of their own home at their own leisure by way of any preferred technological medium. Video on Demand allows its users to stream selected audio and video content through a “set-top box” connected to their television or personal computer to view in real time, or download content to a digital video recorder (DVR) or any portable media player device for leisurely viewing at any time. Users have the option of viewing their downloaded selected content in much the same style as with a VCR with functions such as fast forwarding, pausing, slow forward and rewind functions, etc.

For those who especially enjoy watching movies from the comfort of their own home without having to travel back and forth to the nearest video rental store, the most popular on-demand provider, Netflix, offers the widest range of variety for movies (and prime time episodes) for a small monthly subscription fee comparably lower than most video store rental rates. Netflix subscribers can choose between watching their favorite selected content online via Internet streaming or DVD and Blu-ray Discs via U.S. mail. Instant-watch devices compatible with Netflix include the Amazon Kindle Fire, the Barnes and Noble Nook Tablet, the Xbox 360, the PlayStation 3, the Nintendo Wii, and the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch supported by the Android Version 2.2 and above web browser platform.

According to the research firm Rentrak, American households watched approximately 8.5 hours of programming per day through Video on Demand services with an all-in-all total of over 1 billion hours of VOD programming in 2012. With these statistics guaranteed to continue climbing with each passing year, television networks and cable companies can count on VOD to help build a new audience of viewers from all walks of life.

©2013 Learus Ohnine

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