Friday, June 6, 2008

Home Entertainment Content Overload Will Keep You at Home

How can we leave the living room?

We can see that the Analog to Digital Living Room Long Term Trend is in place as people are upgrading to High Definition Digital Television, [Corning Glassware (GLW) is a play on this.] and installing Home Theater Systems [Dolby (DLB) is a play on this]. Content providers such as Comcast (CMCSA), DirectTV (DTV), and the Dish Network (DISH), also help keep people in their seats.

Now there are even more ways to keep people in their living rooms.

DVRs, or Digital Video Recorders, allow users to record and watch their favorite shows, even in high definition. These devices are very user friendly, and users of products such as Tivo (TIVO) have a cult following. The NDS Group (NNDS) is also another play on this.

Tivo has recently teamed up with (AMZN) to provide a service called Amazon Unbox, that allows movies and shows to be directly downloaded from Amazon to the Tivo DVR.

Netflix (NFLX) and BlockBuster (BBI) offer another alternative to home entertainment. These companies ship DVDs by postal mail and provide another source of home entertainment.

Netflix (NFLX) recently teamed up with Roku. Roku provides a special set-top box that allows subscribers of Netflix to stream a selection of movies directly to their television (which could be a widescreen High Definition Television). [I recently tried out the Roku system, and it is easy to setup and convenient and there are no extra service fees from Netflix. Quality at this time is close to the VHS level, but streaming is very good using broadband.]

Apple (AAPL) has attempted a similar type of Set Top Box with AppleTV but that product has not taken off.

Gaming consoles, from makers such as Nintendo (, Microsoft (MSFT), and Sony (SNE) also provide even more reasons for people to stay in their living room.

With all these forms of entertainment in the living room, how will people leave their living room?

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