Between new competitors, cord-cutting, and government regulation the annual Internet and Television expo comes at a time when the traditional TV business is facing unprecedented challenges.
By the year 2018, eMarketer predicts that one in five Americans won't subscribe to a cable TV package. That doesn't mean that they won't be watching TV, they will just have more ways of accessing what they want to see.
"I would call this the calm before the storm, on the brink of a whole new set of services that are more compelling than the ones we have now," said cable analyst Craig Moffett. "You ain't seen nothing yet in the sense that cord-cutting could be poised to accelerate in the coming year."
More companies than ever are selling access to television, access that is coming in different shapes, sizes and price tags.
Of course there are still the cable and satellite TV companies, and the telcos, such as Verizon FiOs. Now, after years of these players offering traditional bundles, they're increasingly taking new approaches to reach younger demographics with smaller price tags. Most notably, there's Verizon's "Custom TV" packages and Dish's Sling TV.
Plus now there are a slew of tech and Internet companies jumping in to the game: Sony with its PlayStation "Vue," and Amazon, in addition to its on-demand Prime offering, is partnering with Comcast to sell its TV service.
And then there's Hulu, which announced that it's working on a new live TV service launching next year. The company is in advanced talks with two of its owners, Fox and Disney. And because of the restrictions placed upon its third owner, Comcast, when it acquired NBCUniversal, the cable giant doesn't have a vote to say no. (Comcast declined to comment on the negotiations.)