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Ericsson: Status Quo Is Not an Option For the Future

STOCKHOLM—Looking into Ericsson’s crystal ball, consumers in the year 2020 will embrace higher definition, multiple screens and interactivity with a heavy emphasis on social media. The company’s latest consumer experience research, part of its “Media Vision 2020” campaign, states that users six years from now will expect TV, film and gaming experiences to be integrated, accessible and tailored to their interests, devices and personal situations.

“Today, television isn’t delivered predominantly over IP but on RF-based platforms,” said Simon Frost, head of TV Marketing at Ericsson. “But the future challenge and opportunity will be because of the emergence of IP. We’re already seeing that with Netflix and OTT services. This research is designed to help our customers build their strategies around the issues and challenges that they face.”

Leveraging hundreds of its own people in various divisions (Consumer, Business and Technology) from around the world and customer feedback, the Ericsson Media Vision 2020 project spotlights the company’s strategic vision of how the TV and media landscape will evolve in the future. Ericsson uses the phrase “Game Changers” to define what it calls the six most influential factors, in a series of white papers, that are driving the industry migration to multi-screen video consumption—based on interconnected business, consumer and technology fundamentals.

The first look at the six Game Changers, entitled “Forever Evolving Experience,” is a white paper that can now be downloaded here.

The paper paints a picture of how the consumer generation of 2020 will expect to access media from one central viewing point (the living room TV), as well as from their myriad of portable devices, both in the home and on the go. Next-generation television will enhance the viewing experience at home while a new generation of applications will improve the consumer experience on the small screen.

Ericsson said the paper also looks at the broadening definition of the consumer “experience” in a world no longer dominated by select major players. A variety of competitive IP-enabled devices have emerged and more will continue to erode the exclusivity now enjoyed by established media organizations. The information could help shape the future for device manufacturers, social networks and app ecosystems.

What’s clear is that the expectations of viewers in 2020 must be met in order to run a successful media delivery business. It all starts with addressing and improving the consumer TV experience.

“Forever Evolving Experience” is the first study in six-part series of Ericsson Game Changers, which form the company’s vision for TV and media in 2020. Internet Protocol video delivery is certainly part of that future, but it not the only part.

“IP will accelerate the shift in consumption habits,” Frost said. “We predict in an advanced market like North America, a 50-50 balance between time spent on demand and time shift. Live and linear delivery will never go away. While IP will become extremely important as a delivery mechanism in the home, and will make up the entire delivery ecosystem outside the home. It’s clear that there will continue to be other RF methods (satellite, terrestrial, cable) employed as well.”

As consumers drive change and place demands on the technology and business models of the media industry, Ericsson’s Forever Evolving Experience Game Changer highlights specific impacts that enable content owners, broadcasters, TV service providers, network owners and advertisers to succeed on the road to 2020.

Forth-coming “Game Changer” white papers that will become available throughout the year include: “The IP Imperative;” “Brandcasting” (advertising shifts); “Changing consumption Models And Bundles” (due in August-September); “Cloud and Web Approaches to TV;” and “New Money, New Players.”