Analytical paper on Interactive Television

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Master'sA+, October 1996

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Technology is now innovating new ways to view information. Technologies that once existed by themselves are now coming together as one. Television, communication, and computer industries are merging their technologies, and the result is interactive television. Large corporations are betting that if interactive television is offered to the public at a reasonable price, Americans will eat it up. However, interactive television will not be as lucrative for corporations as many of them think. It has a lot of interesting possibilities with a great deal of potential for advertisers. But interactive television requires concentration and an intensity level of viewing that most Americans do not have. Americans use television as a background while they do other chores or eat dinner. They like to watch television in groups, not by themselves. The problem with interactive television is that it works best with a focused individual viewer without distractions. It also requires the user to remain indoors for long periods of time which people don't like to do.

Human beings are social animals. It is this fact that will keep them from being glued to their television sets. Clearly these factors will not allow interactive television to overtake the American home.

So what exactly is interactive television and what does it do? Interactive television is the ability literally to interact with the television set just like we do with a home computer on the Internet. With the advent of fiber optics and satellite communications, the communications industry will be able to transfer megabytes of information in fractions of a second. This will allow every American access to the information super highway. It also allows others, such as advertisers, access to them. New technologies will be rushing into the market place over the next few years. Virtually all signals will be digital; analog will...