Online video platforms took center stage in New York at Digital Content Newfronts, but now, two weeks later, the big boys are taking their turns to show what they can offer, with television upfronts in full swing. One of the more interesting stories as far as the digital landscape is concerned comes from ABC; the major network will update its iPhone app to allow users in New York and Philadelphia to live stream local ABC stations.
To use the service, iPhone owners must confirm their ABC subscription and may then access the content through a “Live” button. The broadcast will be available for both local and national programs, as ABC has secured the rights from programming providers. The next step is an expansion of the service. ABC is in talks with its nationwide affiliates, and it should soon be able to make live streaming available in Boston and Pittsburgh before ultimately branching out to the whole nation.
Consider ABC’s new-and-improved online streaming presence as a staunch response to the web video sites like Hulu and Netflix that are beginning to make the network’s shows easily accessible on demand. Of course, in my case, my phone’s bandwith should allow me to stream about five seconds of Modern Family. If you carry around a super powerful pocket computer, this service is worth checking out.