I just read an interesting article in MIT Technology Review regarding Over the Top (OTT) Video. Specifically focused on Google Tv. After reading the article I had to ask myself why so many product efforts have fallen short in offering a Cable Tv alternative. I think the answer is simple they forgot to focus on the problem not the ad revenue. I believe the core problem to solve for most cord cutters is that the basic desire to pay less for Tv, get the most relevant programming and at the same 1080p quality they get from their current provider. Not so easy to do when content interest are diverging, programmers are charging more and cable companies are forging ahead to extend the current value proposition with mobility features like Tv Everywhere and time shifting enhancements like Remote DVR, expansive VOD libraries, Direct from the Theatre Movies.
Lets look at Google Tv 1.0 and how they focused on making your Tv into a PC. Enabling free Internet content with a more interactive Tv user interface while capturing behaviors and delivering targeted advertising while leveraging Android, Chrome, Adsense and not having to pay programmers for any content. In short at best Google provides a value add service that introduces complexity into the lean back viewing experience or the convenience of not having to start-up your Laptop to connect to the Internet. In short they focused purely on Ad revenues and profits hopping the incremental value and Google brand would inspire adoption. I feel Apple is also far off course as they focused on an ala cart pay per view video model that leveraged the Itunes Store and streamed video to your Tv while integrating music and photos from a PC and Flickr, You Tube, Netflix from the Internet.
Hopefully Google Tv 2.0 will be better and not miss the mark as Apple Tv 2.0 did. Until then the closest thing to an ideal scenario for cord cutters are CE devices that provide Netflix streaming movies and Hulu Plus streaming Tv in 1080p format for a combined $16/month.