Happy New Year!
I hope you have had a great holiday time and the new year has started off well.
Over the holidays I made a short video about what I believe is a fundamental turning point in the way media – and particularly news media will be consumed.
Initially people accessed news either through one of five means – newspapers, magazines, radio, television or word of mouth. I would call this the analog means of accessing news. It’s analog and it’s also somewhat serial – meaning you access one ‘story’ at a time and there isn’t really a good way to get a big picture of all the stories and/or to pick and choose what you want to know about. The ‘news’ was pushed or fed to people by the publisher.
The first major transition for these news sources and for consumers accessing news stories took place with the introduction and proliferation of the internet. Instead of always getting news in the traditional five ways much of the same content was digitized and made available through a web browser. Most of this was free although some news outlets were able to charge for access to certain content in certain forms.
The next major transition – and what I believe is a major paradigm change – is taking place with introduction the iPhone, the iPad, and the subsequent introduction of apps that run on these devices. Most recently Apple introduced the App Store for Macintosh and Google introduced the App Store for Chrome – both of which now are redefining the way that applications are accessed, updated, and used.
Now, almost all of the traditional media houses are creating dedicated applications – apps – that can be run on either a computer screen, a tablet screen, or a phone screen. These apps are optimized for the specific content being made available in some combination of video, audio, and text formats.
There are also applications like FlipBoard being developed that translate ‘content’ from Facebook and Twitter and turn that content into a magazine format – allowing the user to ‘flip’ through the content and go deeper only on the stories that are interesting to them. Peter Yared of Venture Beat calls this the ‘ipadification of the web’ and something he feels is actually good for the internet and internet based content. I agree with him.
The point has come now where people will not surf the web for web pages and they won’t be changing channels on a TV or on a radio. They will be accessing ‘channels’ via specifically designed and build applications. Want to access specific content? There’s an app for that!