Via Things that Make You Go Hmm, I learn that Philips has applied to patent a device to enforce ads on video recording devices (application here). In other words, when the ads come on, there’s a ﬂag that disables the fast-forward button. You then have to watch the commercials.
Just yesterday I was saying how there are companies that have not caught on to the 21st century. And companies that do not have a marketing orientation do perform more poorly, according to countless academic studies over the last 25 years.
Philips is essentially patenting a technology that will be resented by people (it admits as much)—which could also damage its brand. I always heard that the folks at Philips there in the Netherlands were more technically oriented than consumer oriented, and this shows so very clearly with this invention. I’m just surprised that a consumer products’ company would actually set out to create something people would hate, in this day and age.
What year is it again? Posted by Jack Yan, 06:28
Hi, I have own personal count with PHILIPS, read it there:http://www.polyakov.org/wordpress/archives/57
Amazing they have not learned. Wasn’t there also that old story (an urban myth?) about Philips’ early microwave oven, which was originally shaped like a nuclear power station? No one bought it, of course.
That's right Mr. Yan. I absolutely coincide with you. I'd also like to add that Philips is perhaps among one of the few brands now which is suffering from a brand-fatigue as it seems. Their product is so very high-tech [with so very many patents] but they doesn't really catch on with the consumers - at least as far as India is concerned. If you see the market share of consumer electronics companies here you'd find Philips almost non-existent - way behind Samsung or LG or even Videocon - a homegrown brand. But it was not so in the past decades - when Philips was almost synonymous with what was consumer electronics in India. I have occasionally asked friends what they think of Philips. The reply was quick - Philips ! Please. My Dad has had enough of it ! I strongly believe Philips should now be more consumer-centric rather than product-centric. They should get close to the heart of the consumer and if possible go for a total image makeover. Currently they are another Olsmobile on the block.
Well said, Rohan, especially about brand fatigue. Philips needs to reconnect with consumers, and be “one” with them.
Ric—you bet. Igor’s list makes for good reading, in particular.
Update: Philips says the technology can be switched off—whether it’s now back-tracking or not, you be the judge. (Thanks to Adfreak.) I still think my comments about Philips’ technology-ﬁrst stance, as well as what Igor, Rohan and Ric have posted here, remain as valid as ever.
Despite Philips' denial, the wording of the patent application makes it quite clear that the aim is to wrest control from the user's hands, e.g. "The first MHP application then takes exclusive control of the channel switching function. Any attempt by the viewer to switch channels during an advertisement is then disregarded."
This doesn't sound as if it will be easy to switch off, nor designed for people who might or might not like to watch adverts during a movie.
Likewise, the statement "If the viewer wishes to be able to change channels or fast forward during advertisements, the viewer sends a payment authorization to make a payment to the program broadcaster" doesn't sound as if it's down to whether people want to watch ads or not: it's whether they've paid to have the privilege to switch channels during the break.
More discussion of this 'architecture of control':
Thank you, Dan. I believe I said on a few blogs: why invent a device that preserves the status quo of having commercials? You have the answer: the technology goes further than preserving the status quo. Indeed, it takes it far further away from where consumers would like to be. (Incidentally, you are in my blog roll now.)Post a Comment
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