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The Pitfalls of TV’s Mixed-Up App World

The unbundling of cable and the rise of Internet-enabled streaming was supposed to be the promised land for consumers.

While it’s still early in the life of over-the-top video content, the current era is marked more by chaos than a clear view of the future. Thanks to complicated rights agreements, different technical standards and poor design, there’s no easy answer to what content is available online when, or whether an individual network may be distributing a show on its own app.

The result is a mess of viewers hunting and pecking for shows while advertisers remain leery of new streaming video ad formats. And the day cord-cutting becomes the norm remains in the distance.

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From a software perspective, the most effective way to fix the problem is for networks to reach a consensus on what a video app should look like and when new content should appear.