May 19, 2010

Is Bill Gates Still Stunned?

From, January 2007
Bill Gates: Internet Will Revolutionize Television
DAVOS, Switzerland —  The Internet is set to revolutionize television within five years, due to an explosion of online video content and the merging of PCs and TV sets, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates said on Saturday.
"I'm stunned how people aren't seeing that with TV, in five years from now, people will laugh at what we've had"
Well, Bill, it's 2010. We're about 70% of the way there and I don't hear any laughing.

The untold story of the past ten years is how astonishingly powerful television has been.

Despite all the predictions of its demise, television viewing is stronger than ever.
  • TV viewership has grown between 9% and 20% since 2000 (depending on whose numbers you like best)
  • 99% of all video viewing is still done on a television. 1% is done on a computer
  • TiVo and all other DVR devices account for only 5-6% of viewing
  • TiVo has had no discernible effect on ad effectiveness or consumer buying behavior
  • Self-reported tales of "I never watch tv anymore" are all bullshit 
  • TV viewership is at its highest point ever in history
As we have said many times, marketers always overestimate the appeal of new things and always underestimate the power of traditional consumer behavior.

Here's a chart describing the growth of TV ownership.

 And here's a little inside info for the next web maniac who's planning to write about the death of TV: People like it.

Yesterday I wrote a snotty post about Portland. Portlanders are such nice people, I didn't even get one comment from there calling me jerk.

Thanks to Steve Olenski and Tore Claesson for some of today's links
Chart from Business Insider

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