Jakob Sørensen, Head of OTT, Content & Digital Innovation is speaking in the Multiscreen & TV Evolution stream, part of the Customer Experience track, on Day Three of the Broadband World Forum. Ahead of the show we speak to him about his revolutionary role as an in house OTT player inside a telco and what new developments coming down the line excite him.
What’s your biggest motivation in your role at TDC Consumer?
I like being the in-house revolutionary. As Head of OTT within an incumbent telco, I try to turn established truths upside down and challenging existing ways of doing everything. I find the challenge of radically changing our business in order to preserve it to be a fascinating one.
There’s a lot of hype about OTT, but how much of a threat are they to the established telco/cable players?
At current, OTT represents only a modest threat to content distributors, mostly cutting into the home entertainment market. The demand for high speed internet may even be a positive for the broadband business. In the longer run, OTT has the potential to disrupt existing value chains, gobble up serious viewing from traditional TV or drive massive traffic costs for broadband providers, with limited compensation for them from customers. So OTT will become a major challenge – but also represents a major opportunity for existing players to leverage their strengths and exploit new platforms.
Tell me more how the YouSee service in Denmark is hoping to compete with OTT players and what the advantages are for consumers.
The TDC Group has a two pronged OTT strategy; Build a compelling VOD service to build up our position in home entertainment and provide existing cable/IPTV customers with TV everywhere and advanced on demand functionality to bolster the core TV products. As a trusted partner with vested interests in both classic distribution and new platforms, we can help content owners and broadcasters make their content available via OTT without undercutting their existing business. For consumers, that means full and flexible access to high quality and local content – tailor made for the Danish market.
Do you think the public will be concerned that you’re killing off the bricks and mortar video store?
Not really. If the convenience is there, people are perfectly willing to switch from a physical to a digital video product. Changes in release windows and presumed threats to cinemas are a much more contentious issue here.
What are the most exciting gadgets out there at the moment that you’re looking at?
I look forward to bringing home the Xbox One. We’ll see whether it can become the home entertainment device Microsoft is aiming for or whether it can unleash the potential that Kinect holds. No matter what, I am sure we’ll see a whole new quality of games.
What’s your prediction for the most exciting development of 2013?
The Xbox One living room ambitions may be what finally pushes Apple towards an app-store platform on the Apple TV, which could create serious disruption across the SmartTV and OTT landscape.
What are you most looking forward to in taking part in the Broadband World Forum?
Hearing from colleagues across the globe and drawing inspiration from them. The simplest way to reinvent your own business is to look at other people who have taken a different route and consider how you could apply their approach to your own market.