These days, it's rare to find a cable or Web network that hasn't
moved toward the HBO model of producing original content.
) is the highest-profile example, of course, having just released
the well-reviewed series
House of Cards
), and even
) are all also at various stages of developing compelling original
programming in the hopes of differentiating themselves to
The latest to announce its intention to join the fray is Redbox
Instant, the new streaming joint venture from
) Redbox and
"I don't see how you can avoid having original content," said
Redbox Instant CEO Shawn Strickland at the
digital conference in New York City this week.
Strickland said that his company would likely focus on
family-oriented original content, since there was a gap in that
He noted that actor Kevin James, who typically stars in
family-friendly fare, "is a rock star at kiosks… This is one area
from a programming perspective we can look at and see how we can
fit there and fill a void."
However, having just officially launched earlier this year,
Strickland said that Redbox Instant would focus on "creating a
content offering and platform that pulls people in." In terms of
original programming, "Ultimately I think we [will] get there, but
not in the near term."
Redbox Instant's announcement follows one by
(MSFT) in March, which stated that it plans to develop original
content that can be streamed to Xbox users.
According to Microsoft's entertainment and digital media president
Nancy Tellem, the company's Los Angeles studio has set its sights
on offering original content via Xbox consoles by the end of this
Tellem said that
Microsoft is at "the start of the next wave of truly interactive
entertainment," adding that the company hopes to allow audiences to
be able to directly interact with characters on TV shows.
While the rush of companies to invest capital and produce original
content throws up an existential threat to traditional broadcast
and cable giants, for consumers, such competition can only mean one
thing: better products for our enjoyment.