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<br/>Cable VOD Set to Take Off... Without HD - TvTechnology

Cable VOD Set to Take Off... Without HD

Cable execs are expressing frustration over the dilemma that while cable has the technical ability to actually provide something before anyone else does--offer HD movies and special event content in HD via digital VOD--the only thing standing in the way is Hollywood itself, the producers and copyright holders of most c
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Cable execs are expressing frustration over the dilemma that while cable has the technical ability to actually provide something before anyone else does--offer HD movies and special event content in HD via digital VOD--the only thing standing in the way is Hollywood itself, the producers and copyright holders of most commercial HD fare.

At the recent Kagan Research VOD Summit, according to published reports, the heart of the matter is apprehension about piracy and a desire not to allow cable (or anyone else) to get their hands on desirable HD content and colonize it before studios can issue their own film DVDs (where larger profits than from theater box office are no longer uncommon).

In Demand Chief Rob Jacobson told the summit that the next generation of DVD has yet to arrive, "So if you're the studios, do you want to have an HDTV product in the marketplace that's more convenient than DVD? The DVD has been a phenomenal product for Hollywood. They do not want [cable] to come out with a better product that isn't as profitable for them," Jacobson said.

He and a few others are not counting on Hollywood opening up to any type of HD VOD service until a new DVD format is well established, and that could take a while (assuming it happens at all). If the incompatible HD DVD and Blu-ray formats decide to duke it out in the marketplace, which appears increasingly possible, some major studios may hesitate to release their most popular titles for fear of either choosing the wrong format, or simply not being able to rent or sell enough HD disks for maximum profit because of format confusion on the part of consumers.