This ad-supported free TV could come right out of Idiocracy
Remember the movie Idiocracy? It is funny how many of its predictions have come true or may come true in the future. There was one scene in the movie that showed a TV of the future. It showed a tiny image of a show and everything around it was plastered with ads (you can watch this particular scene on YouTube).
Telly is a new project by Pluto TV co-founder Ilya Pozin, which sounds like it could have been one of the first iterations of Ideocracy's perfected form off entertainment. The startup wants to give TVs away for free. While TVs are not especially expensive anymore, getting something for free may sound to some like an even better deal.
There is a catch though. As reported by Jano Roettgers in his Lowpass newsletter, Telly contains a second screen that is showing ads to the viewer. Teevee Corporation, that is the name of the startup, plans to start handing out these TV sets for free later this year.
The company plans to earn revenue from advertising is that is displayed on the secondary screen. The screen will have "about the height of a phone" but will stretch across the entire width of the device according to Roettgers.
Roettgers noted that the secondary display is not bombarding users with a constant stream of ads. It may also show sport scores, news, weather information and other information related to what is shown on the screen.
This means, that the secondary screen needs to have capabilities to identify the content that is playing on the main screen. This information is then used both for displaying advertising and also the non-advertising widgets.
Most of the specifics are not known at this point, but Roettgers believes that the first generation version will be makeshift and not fully have been developed by the company.
The interesting question here is whether there is a market for such an ad-powered TV. It is also unclear whether the system can be gamed or if there are certain requirements, such as an always on Internet connection, to even watch content on the main television.
There is certainly a market when it comes to offering content for free or for a lower price in exchange for advertising. Netflix's ad plan appears to be doing well, and Pozin's Puto TV is free entirely to watch.
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