Widgets & the Future of Content Distribution (Panel Preview)

Widgets & the Future of Content Distribution (Panel Preview)

The Widgetisation of Media, by Gerd Leonhard

Greetings!  I am Gerd Leonhard, Author & Futurist, and occasional guest blogger on the MIPCOM blog. I will be making a short presentation on ‘The Widgetization of Media’ at this year’s MIPCOM, followed by what is promising to be a very thoughtful panel session with Tom Smith (Universal McCann), Olivier Creiche (SixApart), and Neil Perkin (IPC Media). All 3 panelists have a great deal of knowledge to share as far as Widgets & Content Syndication are concerned – be sure to drop by the Esterel hall at 10.40, October 16.

If you don’t yet really know what widgets are, yet, not to worry: peruse my various blog posts on widgets and / or read this very pertinent summary on the ReadWriteWeb blog.

Regardless of the somewhat geeky-sounding title this session will be very much hands-on and (hopefully) instantly applicable to the TV, film, video and interactive industries’ immediate future. We will be touching on issues such as what de-centralized content distribution really means, if and how widgets can be turned into revenue generators, and will be discussing some interesting examples of who is doing what with widgets. 

Of course, widgets are no longer just about computers and mobile devices: now TV-Widgets are herPicture_32e, too: Samsung recently announced their first series of TVs that will be connected to the Internet, straight out of the box (see a demo of  Samsung’s See’N’Search set-top box here) – which means you can add widgets to the very same screen that you watch TV on. Here’s a quote from a recent press release by Yahoo: "The Widget Channel – its official name – will be powered by Yahoo
Widget Engine, allowing you to sit back on your sofa like a lazy couch
potato, and enjoy small internet applications such as news and weather,
all from your remote control."  Intel is a partner in this, as well.

So what does this mean? Well, if you are into widgets on your computer & mobile device (I think that early-adopter-crowd amounts to about 170-200 Million people right now – so this is still very early, indeed, but the combined firepower of iPhone, Google’s Android and Nokia’s Widsets are changing this very quickly), very soon you can chose from 1000s of widgets that will be available on your super-sized TV screen in your living room (or wherever else you "like to watch").

Imagine: stock tickers, twitter tweets, RSS feeds, music widgets, social network messages, video streams, contvertising 😉  Now what will that do to the TV industry? Talking about competing for attention. And ad $$.

Picture_31 We are indeed heading into the Attention, Conversation and Participation Economy at mindboggling speed.

More via the Yahoo/Intel press release, Video here (quality is not so hot but it’s a good start). Other resources:  List of TV widgets.