Sony’s Move into Web TV

Over the next few months, Sony and its competitors will introduce a new generation of Web-connected televisions—and services that will stream movies, TV shows, and music over the Internet and onto those sets. The idea is to make it easier for consumers to bypass cable and effectively create their own personal TV channels. That may sound a lot like what many people already are doing by tapping into YouTube, Hulu, and other entertainment Web sites. What’s different is that Sony and the other manufacturers are hoping to go after advertising dollars as well as subscription revenue and pay-per-view fees. Instead of using computers and mobile devices for their daily dose of free television, viewers would pay Sony or another company to watch on much more expensive equipment. Chief Executive Howard Stringer says that as consumers watch less TV in their living rooms, the industry needs to adjust quickly to the changing ways viewers take in entertainment. Last month, Sony unveiled the prototype of a TV that will deliver video and music over the Web in partnership with Google. These Google TVs are expected to be in stores by Christmas


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