The advancement in media technology has had a significant impact on television as a component of it.

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The development in media technologies has had a huge effect on television as part of it. The emerging developments have a positive and detrimental effect on the entertainment industry. Media technology such as digital video recorders, video streaming and internet downloading clash directly and indirectly with broadcast providers. New innovations are uploading entertainment rivalry as well as perceived time competition, with the result that the time for viewing and listening to televisions has been significantly decreased. Study performed by Robert Kraut (2010) reveals that the more time a person spends on the internet the less time he spends watching television. They went on arguing that the internet is posing the same challenge to televisions as the television did to its preceding technologies of radio and newspapers. The much attention given to televisions as the source of entertainment and news has reduced significantly.


Televisions have been for quite a while been used as a major source of entertainment in the family. With the invention of Digital Video Recorders (DVR) which enable recording of programs, the entertainment component of television has been more significantly affected (Kompare). The DVR give consumers an option of playing content on demand, unlike televisions. The DVRs have the ability to carry extra huge files in an extremely compact device such as flash discs. The DVRs can be played on computers and TV screens. Therefore, they offer time competition to the televisions by reducing the time spent watching televisions (Robert Kraut, Sara Kiesler, Bonka Boneva, Irina Shklovski). (Robert Kraut, et. al).


Internet live video streaming and internet downloads are posing threat to television as a major source of news content. Consumers can stream content live or recorded content via modern media devices such as smartphones, tablets, personal computers among others (Robert Kraut, et. al). Netflix is a good example of video streaming online site that has posed a bigger threat to televisions. Content can be streamed live or recorded to be watched on demand without storing it your device. Live events such as football matches and political rallies can be lively streamed via the internet.

Impact on Television Business Model

The introduction of DVRs posed the same challenges as the Videocassette Recorders (VCR) and Remote Control Device (RCD) did when introduced in the 1970s and 1980s respectively. There were mixed reactions to how they were going to affect television advertisement business (Eileen O’Neill, Marianne Barrett). VCR enabled recording of a program and watching it later. Some advertisers argued that this could help increase the audience of the advertisement coming in between the program. However, others argued that the users may fast-forward the adverts thus render it ineffective (Eileen O’Neill, Marianne Barrett). The RCD, which was invented in the emergence of cable television services would enable users to switch to programs of interest to avoid vexing advertisements.

Digital Video Recorders (DVRs) have the ability to record a programming in television excluding advertisements then the user can watch it later at his own convenience (Eileen O’Neill, Marianne Barrett). Television firms generate a good income from advertisements placed on their televisions (Eileen O’Neill, Marianne Barrett). The ability of DVRs enabling users to strip commercials from programs they intend to watch can affect television advertisement business negatively. The advertisers may opt to use other media for advertising their products on realizing the television advertisement is not effective.

Consumer Habits

The Internet and digital technologies have immensely affected the normal daily life. Consumers are significantly turning to the internet for news and entertainment especially in developed countries (Robert Kraut, et. al). The internet is believed to offer individualized schedule and content. The consumers can look for specific news story or entertainment they want on the internet and avoid watching enter news program on television. A research conducted by Robinson and De Haan (Robert Kraut, et. al) indicates that in America users of the internet have reduced watching television by four hours more than non-internet users. However, Robert Kraut, et. al argues that the change on television watching occasioned by the internet will depend on how an individual uses the internet. There will be a less significant change for those who use the internet for commerce and communication compared to those who use the internet for entertainment and news.

Adaptation To Technological Advancement

Yes, the television industry, just like any other industry had some friction with the advancement in media technology. The introduction of Home video devices ad hoc VCRs in the 1970s marked the start of ‘disturbance’ of television industry ‘comfort’ (Kompare). Television industry had no otherwise but to start adapting new coming technologies. Though the 1970s and 1980s new technologies only posed time challenge to the television industry, currently the industry is confronting bigger threat; digital technology. Digital technology is giving competition from all corners; time, content and quality of content aired by the television.

Convergence brought about by the Digital technology is changing the manner in which people receive media content (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). The internet uses Protocols (IPs) to transmit data. This method has enabled access to information via various digital devices including mobile phones, personal computer among other mobile and fixed devices (OECD). The increased access to information via various devices affects the television business as it makes regulation hard. The digital transmission of information renders the traditional television technology of broadcasting costly. Therefore, consumers are shifting to digital technology which is cheaper and gives relatively quality content. The television industry is confronted with uncertain of technology. It is hard to predict future consumer habits.


The advent of new technologies has been both a blessing and a curse for the television industry. The positivity has come in terms of technology that has made the television better as a piece of equipment. For example, satellite transmission has greatly improved the reach of television content. On the other hand, there is the negative aspect where technology has robbed the TV of its market and relevance. Previously people would watch movies primarily on TV sets, these days, that is no longer the case as people now have laptop computers, tablets, and live streaming over the internet. From this perspective, the digital ear has been a double-edged sword to the television industry, as a matter of fact, it is hard to tell which is dominant; positive impact or negative impact. For example, Television sales have not shown a significant decrease, they seem to be bought hand in hand with the apparently competing devices. At this point, we note that these technologies are no exact substitutes for the TV but a mix of substitutes and complements. Last but not least, the Television is a piece of technology that is likely to transcend these advancements much as the calculator has transcended the cell phone and other means of calculation.

Works Cited

Eileen O’Neill, Marianne Barrett. “TiVO—The Next Big Thing? DVRs and Television Advertising Models.” 2004.

Kompare, Derek. Television & New Media. Massachusetts: SAGE, 2009.

Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. “Competition Issues in Television and Broadcasting.” 2013.

Robert Kraut, Sara Kiesler, Bonka Boneva, Irina Shklovski. Examining the Impact of Internet Use on TV Viewing: Details Make a Difference. Pittsburgh, PA 15213: Carnegie Mellon University, 2010.

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