The VCR Is Dead, But Video Is Fast ForwardingAugust 25, 2016
The last remaining VCR manufacturer ended production last month, signaling the end of the Be Kind, Rewind Era.
To be honest, news that VCRs were still on assembly lines past the century mark is shocking, especially with the rise in digital video viewers. Even more remarkable are the advances we are seeing this year with virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), underscored by the massive Pokémon Go audience.
It seems pretty clear that our methods of delivering video content have changed drastically. What hasn’t shifted over time is our fascination with video itself.
A Look at Video Today
Adults in the U.S. now consume 99 minutes of digital video each and every day. That’s 38 more minutes than just a year ago.
To date, live streaming video is available on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter – with Instagram and Snapchat releasing their own versions of collected videos from live events.
Two million VR headsets will be sold by the end of this year. Though, to be fair, this medium isn’t expected to go mainstream for another six to eight years. In technology, that feels like a lifetime.
Augmented reality, however, soared past virtual reality this year with the introduction of Pokémon Go. This location-based mobile app blends the real world and the fictional world for some insanely impressive video gaming. Some are concluding the gloss is fading, but 9.5 million users can’t be wrong…right?
From live streaming to virtual and augmented reality, I think it’s fair to say we’re not in Kansas anymore.
Where Video is Headed
Digital video natives are leading the way, tapping into cord cutter audiences that abandoned cable television for online and streaming programs.
Tastemade, the fifth-largest video publisher on Facebook and born from a tiny YouTube channel, now amasses triple the number of viewers as The Food Network.
Apple announced recently it’s working on augmented reality behind the curtain, calling it a “core technology.”
Amazon is working on original VR and AR content, because of course they are.
The VCR has left the building, but I predict we are only at the beginning of the future.
New video technologies are gaining traction, reshaping not only how we watch videos but also how we become a part of them.