TV and Internet
The Economist writes about Joost:
[Joost] s based on P2P software that runs on people’s computers, just like Skype and KaZaA. And it does indeed promise to transform the experience of watching television by combining what people like about old-fashioned TV with the exciting possibilities of the internet. But unlike KaZaA and Skype, says Fredrik de Wahl, a Swede whom Messrs Zennstrm and Friis have hired as Joost’s boss, Joost does not disrupt the industry that it is entering. Instead, rather than undercutting television networks and producers, he says, Joost might, as it were, give them new juice.
Joost is also ignoring the two business models seen as the most respectable alternatives to advertising. One is to make users pay for each television show or film they download, but then to let them keep it. This is the tack chosen by Apple, an electronics firm that sells videos on iTunes, its popular online store; by Amazon, the largest online retailer; and by Wal-Mart, the largest traditional retailer, which launched a video-download service this week. The other approach is to let users subscribe to what is, in effect, an all-you-can-eat buffet of videos, and then to stream video to their computers without leaving a permanent copy. This is the approach taken by, for instance, Netflix, a Californian firm that mostly delivers DVDs to its subscribers by post, but now also streams films.