With movies from Netflix, games from ESPN, music from Last.fm, and status updates from
Twitter, Microsoft has evolved the Xbox 360 into a premium content
delivery device, not just a game console. Now, with its new Kinect
motion-controller system, the company has the means to turn the Xbox 360
into a hyper-targeted ad platform.
After all, Kinect can recognize
different users by their faces.
Google TV may be the search giant's most ambitious initiative yet, but its success is far from guaranteed. While the time seems right for television-internet convergence, making it happen is going to be hard work.
One of the biggest difficulties Google has with Google TV is getting content owners on board. Recently, a number of American television networks, namely ABC, CBS and NBC, blocked consumers from accessing video content on their websites through Google TV.
When Google TV was first announced, I wrote that it "might be one of the most important things the company has attempted." If successful, Google would do nothing less than realize the dream of television-web convergence.
But I also noted that execution was key, and there was no shortage of skeptics who questioned whether Google would be able to put it all together.
According to one report, peer-to-peer VoIP provider Skype is the largest carrier of international voice calls. But the company think it's just getting started as the company looks to expand its large footprint by turning "every connected device" into a communications device that can run Skype.
How will it to that? Easy: make it possible for Skype to find its way into all of the devices that were once 'offline' but that are now being connected to the internet.
For nearly as long as the internet has been available to the general public, entrepreneurs and technologists have dreamed of the convergence of the television and the web. From WebTV to today's internet-enabled gaming consoles, the small screen and the internet have been introduced to each other.
But the type of convergence that many have predicted and sought to create has remained elusive. The world's biggest search engine, however, hopes to change that.
Sarah Fay, the chief executive of Aegis Media North America, is known for her smarts, a genuine warmth, and not incidentally, the fact that she's one of the most powerful women in advertising in North America, if not the world.
A 10-year veteran of Carat, Fay has steadily risen in the ranks until she ultimately achieved the top slot in 2007, when the company merged the digital and traditional media assets of Carat and Isobar into a single integrated operating unit.
We caught up with Sarah to ask about advertising in a recession, trends in media buying, and what's been surprising and inspiring her since she took up the reins at Aegis.