ABC to Make Shows Available Online and in HD!

     May 14, 2007



Congratulations, genius idea. Whoever thought of allowing shows to be in HD on an ad supported site should be getting a promotion.


Here is the deal. ABC is going to be launching an ad supported HD channel on the ABC.com website this summer. Not only will you be able to catch a show you may have missed, but you’ll be able to watch it in HD! Many people already download shows in HD through bittorent and when they do advertisers make zero money. By offering an online HD channel the networks will be able to cash in on their shows and also make it easier for people to locate what they want to watch and when they want to watch it. The best part for them is that viewers will have to watch ads, and most likely you won’t be able to fast forward them. In fact this arrangement is better for anyone producing television as it’s a great way to ad to their bottom line.



Now the best part for all of us is the other networks will probably join in as they’ll see there is money to be made. Whatis still up in theair iswhen will they put the new content online? Will they place it there the same day that it airs? The next day? Only during the summer months?



Because many shows that air here in the states don’t air in other countries until many months later. So not only will this system work for all of us in America, but people around the world who typically wait months for a show should be just as excited as they’ll have access to the same content as well.



Ultimately this had to happen as many people have jumped online to download and watch their shows. By providing the content in HD the networks will get a huge audience that won’t have to search for the content. Also they’ll get a ton of new revenue for their bottom line.



It’s a great idea and I look forward to when all the other networks announce similar systems.



Here is the press release for more information.





FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER, DISNEY-ABC TELEVISION GROUP TO MAKE HD CONTENT AVAILABLE ONLINE AT ABC.COM



Beta Version of HD Channel to Launch on ABC.com’s Ad-Supported, Full-Episode Broadband Player This Summer



Dedicated to expanding its network and channel brands across multiple platforms and connecting viewers with their favorite shows anytime and anywhere, Disney-ABC Television Group announced today that it will begin to stream content in true high definition resolution this summer on its Emmy Award-winning ABC.com broadband video.



“We are excited to be the first in the industry to stream HD video available on the web, providing ABC.com users with an unprecedented online viewing experience,” said Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks, and president, Disney-ABC Television Group. “By continuing to listen to our audience and enhancing our digital offerings with the best technology available, we further strengthen their relationship to our brands.”



Launching as a beta test in early July, the full-episode broadband player’s HD channel will feature a limited amount of content in true high-definition 1280 X 720 resolution from such series as “Lost,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Ugly Betty.” In conjunction with the launch of the new season in September, a more robust HD programming lineup will be offered.



“This is all about innovating and creating ‘what’s next’ to give consumers the best experience as they watch our content, regardless of viewing platform,” said Albert Cheng, executive vice president, Digital Media, Disney-ABC Television Group. “With the advancements in display devices and the prevalence of hardware with the processing capabilities to handle this technology, offering true HD content online is a natural.”



Additionally, this fall the ABC.com’s full episode player will be expanded further to included national news and local content, in addition to primetime entertainment programming. This new player will be geo-targeted, offering the ability for local ads and content to be more relevant to each individual user.



ABC.com’s broadband player currently offers full-length episodes in high quality, standard definition resolution of over a dozen series, including “Desperate Housewives,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Lost,” “Ugly Betty,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Notes from the Underbelly,” “Dancing with the Stars” and “According to Jim,” free to consumers on ABC’s website the day after their broadcast premieres.



In April the full-episode player began offering full-screen viewing as well as a small “mini” screen that users can position wherever they choose on their desktops, in addition to the two original standard viewing size viewing options. To date, ABC affiliates covering 80% of the country — including all major affiliate groups and the ten ABC owned stations — have launched or have committed to launching the player on their own websites and are taking advantage of the opportunity to incorporate local advertising into the programming.


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