Afterthoughts: YATS 16

Hello and welcome to YATS Afterthoughts, Larry Press here. We talked about the various media stores on episode 16 of YATS, and I came across this article this morning.

The story is so complicated that it makes my head hurt. There are so many dimensions — the media type (movie, TV show, song, podcast, etc.), rental and purchase prices, rental terms, supported devices, available titles, etc. etc. If we could find a way to summarize all of this in charts or whatever, it would be a great service to mankind.

The bad news is that the market is a mess, but the good news is that no one has “won” yet — there is room for competition. Note that the article ignores Microsoft.

We talked about their lack of innovation last night. Here is a happy dream — Microsoft comes out with a terrific set-top x-box and opens a great store that kicks everyone’s butt. We also need to be able to move seamlessly from one “store” to another the way Roku lets us move between Amazon and Netflix.

I checked out the Ouya that Mat talked about. I would worry that it might be a paper tiger if I were planning to send them some $$. It also seems to me to be oriented exclusively toward gaming. While there are a lot of gamers, I bet there are a lot more media consumers, who want to hook a single smart, programmable box to their dumb TV display and audio system. I started to write “and a DVR,” but, on second thought, that belongs in the cloud in a neutral place that the user owns and controls.

Or, if that doesn’t save Microsoft, how about your car as a MS platform?

Do you guys know anything about this stuff? Ford is pushing electronics hard, with the car as an open platform for developers. Does Msoft power Ford?