August 13, 2008 |
Associated Press reports today about how the Olympic Games influence the way people use new technology heavier than ever before. What’s more important, for some of the people the Oplympics serve as an incentive to actually try some new technologies for the first time. For example, half of all the people who used their mobile devices to consume video content actually made it for the first time in their lives.
NBC Universal with its broad online video coverage of the Olympics is said to be using the Games as some kind of a research lab to track adoption of new technologies by users. The statistics for Monday is very interesting: over 2 million people consumed some content on NBC Olympics website with over 476 thousand people doing it via a mobile device.
But predictably, tradition viewing on TV remains the most popular with 95% of people sticking to this method and only the remaining 5% venturing online for their share of video content from Beijing. Of course, it is absolutely understandable given the fact that quality of the video materials available online is much worse than what you can normally get on TV.
What is somewhat disappointing is that in addition to teaching people to use their cell phones to consume video content NBC also teaches everyone what Microsoft Silverlight technology is and how excellent it is to consume online video with this technology. Getting an exclusive with NBC for their extensive coverage of the Games was probably the best thing Microsoft could do to ensure brand awareness and adoption of Silverligh. But it still feels rather uncomfortable simply because normally users also want some freedom in choosing what technology they use instead of being pushed in the right direction.