What's the Future of the Connected TV?

A lot of companies are developing new ways to deliver content to your TV, but will the television watching experience really change in the next few years?

May 31, 2014 at 8:00AM

While smartphones have seen huge amounts of change and innovation across the past decade, the television experience lags behind. In the following video, Eric Bleeker and Max Macaluso discuss their time at Connections -- "The Premier Connected Home Conference" -- in San Francisco earlier this month. 

The two discuss hold-ups to innovation, namely that cable companies control set-top boxes and want to maintain control of the user experience, such as offering pay movies and their own app stores. That's led to a situation where cheap devices like Roku, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Chromecast, and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) TV are gaining traction. Yet the fact that each device is separated from the main value in television -- having access to the hundreds of channels the average consumer pays each month -- limits their overall value. 

As Eric notes in the video, optimism over ideas like an Apple TV that's actually an integrated television set have ebbed as companies focus more on cheaper devices. So long as big telecoms like Comcast control the set-top-box experience, the television market will likely remain fragmented, with telecoms offering lightly used mobile apps and technology companies focusing on cheap devices that don't easily integrate with television services consumers are paying for. 

To see Eric and Max's full thoughts, watch the following video. 

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Eric Bleeker, CFA, has no position in any stocks mentioned. Max Macaluso, Ph.D. owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Amazon.com, Apple, and Google (A and C shares). Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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