For those who have ever wondered what television looks like in other nations, GlobeCast is about to bring an impressive solution their way. Yesterday, they announced the commercial debut of MyGlobeTV, a service that will offer a variety of television programs from a variety of different lands in a variety of different languages.
The commercial launch of MyGlobeTV will be heavily focused on Romanian channels, with 16 different Romanian-language channels--described as "premium Romanian-language channels"--involved in the launch. Much of MyGlobeTV's early offerings will be heavy on news and political commentary, with a healthy portion devoted to programs devoted to cooking and medical issues, and a very small sliver devoted to what might be considered entertainment. GlobeCast is planning a rapid expansion, however, so for those who wanted German or French television, instead of just Romanian issues, those demands are likely to be met in the near future.
MyGlobeTV will require a set-top box at first, connected to the user's home broadband connection, but GlobeCast expects to have an app available for use by the end of 2012. This in turn will make the service available on Internet-enabled devices of all types, including tablets and smartphones. GlobeCast, for its part, first showed off MyGlobeTV at the NAB Show back in April, and is looking forward to bringing in shows from around the world for consumption in the United States.
While a Romanian-language set of broadcasts about Romanian issues isn't likely to gain a whole lot of ground--considering the comparative dearth of Americans who actually speak Romanian in the first place, the audience will be almost artificially small in the early stages unless some kind of translation is involved, preferably via subtitles or at least dubbing--the idea is an interesting one. IPTV (News - Alert) has had a tough time gaining ground due to two counter-fronts of resistance: bandwidth providers who often offer traditional entertainment channels like television, and content providers who don't want consumers to have too easy access to their programming and thus pull revenue from things like advertising and DVD sales. Going through foreign sources of programming, however, often improves on a rights and access front, as views in other countries often aren't counted in terms of things like advertiser reach and DVD sales markets, though that last isn't always the case. Basically, Channel 3 in the U.S. doesn't much care for the idea of going online as it will pull viewers away from the television equivalent, but if Channel 3 gets a chance to open up shop in Japan with Internet-based viewing, it makes a note of sense.
It will be interesting to see how GlobeCast's offering ultimately manages to perform, and may well mark a start of a new era in streaming video, with easy access to foreign markets undercutting the domestic market and forcing the content providers' hands.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman
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