On Episode 306 of The Waves of Tech, we are back with a wide slate of tech topics on the table. To start things off, we dive into the $3.8 billion acquisition of DreamWorks by Comcast and what that means to the industry. Next up, we dissect the rumors behind Hulu offering a subscription based live TV service in early 2017 and explore the journey behind new media in the traditional media realm. Third, we discuss the trend of others playing explicit music and podcasts in front of groups of people and at restaurants. And finally, we examine McDonald’s purchase of thousands of tablets for use in their chains across the UK and the potential impact this technology will have on the workforce and wage earners. Enjoy Episode 306 and continue to ride…the waves of tech.
In 2006, Disney purchased Pixar for $7.4 billion. Comcast is now getting into the animation business with the acquisition of DreamWorks. The company’s NBCUniversal division purchasing the amination giant and will incorporate the brand into Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, which includes Universal Pictures, Fandango, and NBCUniversal Brand Development. This provides Comcast with an entry into the animation industry and will help them grow their film, movie, television, theme park, and product base. DreamWorks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg will give up his leadership position but remain involved with ownership interests in two digital ventures of DreamWorks.
The traditional media outlets continually crawl into the new media space, understanding that consumers are interested in only select programming and are willing to pay a valuable dollar amount for that. Hulu is rumored to be offering a separate subscription service in early 2017 that would allow users to stream select broadcast television channels. The initial rumored cost is $40 per month and DVR-type functionality would be included. Without a use base over 10 million, this could be a giant play by Hulu and allow them to gather a foothold in the new media, cord cutting trend. Whereas the price point can be justified, we are all still waiting to see what a little bit of competition being new and traditional media outlets will look like for the consumer in the near future.
A Little Decency Please
How’s the saying go…”There’s always one in the bunch.” Well, this seems to be the case here and there when a couple people decide that playing an explicit podcast at lunch time in the middle of a restaurant is acceptable. The long and short of it is, it’s not appropriate. We can blame the ease of access to technology and the acceptability of using mobile phones whenever we want, but the truth of the matter is that poor decisions and being disrespectful are traits of individuals and not of the general population. Steve shares his story of asking some guys to turn off an explicit podcast, considering families and children were present.
The push for a higher minimum wage is beginning to manifest itself in the technology industry. We know that as business owners, personnel are the heaviest cost to a business. Ways business owners reduce their overhead is by replacing people with technology. This is exactly what McDonald’s and other fast food chains plan to do in the near future. The Golden Arch food giant is purchasing thousands of tablets for integration into their franchise locations, similar to the likes of Chili’s, Red Robin, and Uno’s. Many food and retail locations are already using kiosks and stand alone systems to place orders, thus reducing costs and availability of jobs.