Ditch the TV for a Computer in the Living Room?

How much time do you spend on your computer and smartphone compared to the time spent watching television? The figures are going to surprise you! Trends suggest that you should probably put a computer in your living room where you big screen use to be!

This question would not have been asked 15 years ago. Today this question is relevant because computers and smartphones are sharing screen space with the television set and the radio as sources of news and entertainment. Television viewing has been fractured by the internet and modern electronics. Luckily, you don’t need to choose because companies like Comcast offer packages that include both!

The DVR really started this break up; though some would argue it was the video recorder way back in the early 1980s. There were once three major broadcast networks, a public television affiliate and a few local stations in your community. A rooftop antenna picked up the broadcast signals. The networks and local station managers decided which programs would be shown at what time during
prime time viewing between 8 pm and 11 pm. Local programming worked around prime time network TV.

Advertising was sold based on television program ratings and the networks competed with each other to dominate programming. (They still do compete but you can now watch TV programs on your computer or cell phone anytime.)

Cable television entered the market around 1970 bringing big city TV to everyone, even in remote areas. Antennas were no longer needed. Stations were added to the cable services. Prime cable stations such as HBO and Showtime cost extra but they delivered sports and special programming with their own productions.

Cable stations expanded with programs for every interest to the point where cable now offers hundreds of stations, many of them devoted exclusively to news, sports and music. Special interest cable stations include travel, sports, nature programs, fashion, cooking, religion, home decor, cartoons and reruns of old sitcoms. Many cable stations offer their own original programs that compete with broadcast networks.

Cable stations in the U.S. also offer programs in several languages with Spanish by far the most common. The Latino market makes up a large and growing percentage of the cable audience in the United States.

Viewers can record programs and watch them later. Binge television, watching several hours of recorded TV programs at a time, is not unusual. People have busy lives and they may want to set aside a time to catch up on their favorite programs. They use their remote controls to fast-forward through the ads, much to the distress of advertisers.

The broadcasting and cable networks quickly adapted to the internet. Network and cable news can now be found on various station websites. You no longer have to tune into the nightly news, either local or national. It’s literally at your fingertips online 24/7. This includes CNN, the leader of the 24-hour cable television news cycle.

If you missed your favorite television program and forgot to record it, you can watch on the station’s website. There are other premium services for watching TV exactly of your choosing. You can watch streaming DVDs on your computer.

You can also find television programs and clips from old programs on YouTube. YouTube is a virtual library of old and new TV clips of pop culture along with TV programs, excerpts and home videos of anything and everything. Access to YouTube is worldwide and a video goes viral when people watch it everywhere in a very short amount of time.

The popularity of content on YouTube is measured; the company, owned by Google, tracks the number of times the video is accessed. Advertisers have taken advantage of this ability to post videos of their products through the website – at all levels of creativity. Ad videos appear on many landing pages through YouTube and other similar sites.

Which is it Going to Be?

(Image Credit: Beamer Wilkins, Source)

While TVs look better in the living room, computers have better more advantages. If you are concerned about your aesthetics, take a look at this site. They have all sorts of ideas on how to integrate your PC into your normal living room space. Will it become a fad in the future? We think so!


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