AI And The Battle For Our Eyeballs
Maybe content isn't the only key differentiator between streamers.
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Conventional wisdom across the media industry suggests that there will be a consolidation of streaming platforms and providers. The fight will then be over who has the best content. This hypothesis formed a large part of the recent podcast episode with Tom Merritt.
But what if that’s wrong? Or, at least, not the whole story. What if other factors serve as key differentiators too? We all have apps we’re put off using because of horrible design - I still have a difficult relationship with ITV’s streaming offering, now called ITVX, because of its user interface. With the emergence of improving AI technology, the user experience could get even more sophisticated.
Variety outlined a great example - Spotify’s new DJ feature.
As reporter Andrew Wallenstein points out:
In terms of its algorithmic prowess, AI DJ is probably no more effective at serving up personalized song recommendations than anything Spotify is already currently doing on its platform. Regardless, what makes AI DJ stand out as an innovation is its vocal manifestation. There’s something uniquely powerful about taking the same old algorithms and anthropomorphizing them in a human-sounding voice.
Such technology could, without a huge technological leap, be introduced to video streaming services too and improve the experience for many viewers. There are already recommendation engines suggesting what you should watch next but in reality, they just flag something very similar to the show or movies you’ve just finished. Like romcoms? Have another. Crime dramas more your thing? Here you go.
The introduction of human-like AI tools that gives recommendations based on a broader context could be very powerful indeed.
Back to Variety:
Imagine, instead, a homepage experience featuring an AI personality with intimate knowledge of your viewing habits. This figure greets you by name, wishes you a “good afternoon” because it knows you’re watching at 2 p.m. and references the last program you watched as it asks if you’d like to pick up where you left off.
And if you were in the market for something new to view, maybe an AI-fueled avatar is up to the challenge.
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