10 months ago

Day 5 - IFA International

  • Text
  • Products
  • Berlin
  • Oled
  • Consumer
  • Consumers
  • September
  • European
  • Technologies
  • Digital
  • Content

We give buyers the kinds

We give buyers the kinds of multi-media tools that favour a more intelligent purchasing process. Be sure to be there... SDI - Sustainable Development Initiatives SMARTreport and are your company’s chance to promote its environmental policies in a purpose built publication that targets retailers in the Consumer Lifestyle sector. By the Publisher of IFA International CONTACT Jooree Cho Project Manager Sustainable Development Initiatives Tel: +33 (0)4 42 77 46 00

Exclusive Interview Consumer electronics converge with content The balance of power is changing, according to Panasonic’s Fabien Roth “I see 3D kicking into the mass market in the second quarter of 2011." By Julian Newby All the talk in cyberspace is about Panasonic striking 3D deals with Hollywood studios, but the company has a four-pronged approach when it comes to content: “We’re looking at connected TV, movies, user-generated content and games, and we're going to replicate that for our IPTV service,” says Fabien Roth, General Manager, Television, Panasonic Europe How are negotiations going with the Hollywood studios? With our partners, we are talking to most of the studios because we want new titles – 3D titles in fact, for IPTV and for Blu-ray. But it takes time, because the studios have different priorities sometimes. Some of them are hesitant when it comes to putting 3D content on the internet, because of the understandable fear that digital sales could have a negative affect on the movie theatres. But we don’t believe that would happen. So there is a long-term plan to establish partnerships for content. Those partnerships could be with studios or broadcasters or publishers. So now you are seeing a TV manufacturer – who until now has no experience in the content world – influencing what the consumer sees on the screen. You could say that the balance of power is changing. You entered the content business earlier this year when you teamed with the French Tennis Federation (FFT) and Eurosport for 3D broadcasts of the French Open tennis in TV retail outlets. How is that project progressing? If you just focus on live broadcasting the windows are very narrow, unless you have a TV channel of course. Connected TV is good for catch-up. So what we are trying to do is to make both co-exist. With our live events, ideally we would like to have them in 3D, and also on catch-up. So we announced recently that we are going to do the French Open again, in 3D. We have also signed with the US Open and the Australian Open, so we have three out of the four grand slam tournaments. Tennis is good because it's played at a fixed location – the cameras are fixed, unlike football. You can do a lot of preparation beforehand too. The message here at IFA this week is that 3D is the future. When, in your view, will 3D become mass-market? I see 3D kicking into the mass market in the second quarter of 2011. We recognise that with some demographics, 3D take-up might could be slower than with others, but in this industry it is standards that are driving the products. What I mean is that if even though you haven’t subscribed to a 3D channel, you probably want to have a TV that is 3D-ready. The future-proof argument is a very strong one when you buy an expensive product like a TV. So what I’m saying is that even those people don’t have access to 3D content from the outset are likely to buy a 3D-TV. In terms of content, it is still a big challenge. We are going to do something with Eurosport for sure at the French Open in 2011. We’re going to be active with games publisher Ubisoft, with whom we have signed an exclusive European partnership, and also we are going to push the end-toend story, by launching the first consumer 3D camcorder to give consumers more real 3D content, and making it a family experience. There are four distinct content areas in our strategy for building a 3D market: broadcast – specifically IPTV; movies, through partnerships with the studios; user generated content, driven by the 3D camcorder; and games, through partnerships with publishers. You’ve established the 3D Innovation Center in Japan. This suggests you’re moving further Fabien Roth, General Manager, Television, Panasonic Europe into the content side of the business. Following the French open experiment, the idea was to get organised, to make content part of our business strategy, and to see how it can drive product sales and how we can benefit from each other. And why not consider some new business models – there are so many ways for us to be a part of some of the business that's happening. When you think about 3D, this is driving a lot of the broadcasters and the choices that people are making, so we can influence those choices, and also we can influence the revenue stream. So this Innovation Center is there to suggest new projects across content. IFA International • Tuesday, 7 th September 2010 17

IFA International