Everyone’s Getting Connected with the Boob Tube

If Fred is the future of connected TV, please allow me to disconnect.

It is a time when TVs that are aligned with and act like our computers — smart TVs — are the ones on two-thirds of people’s shopping lists. And 40 percent of consumers say they will upgrade their TVs in 2012. Sites like YouTube are prepared to sidestep the television industry all together as video stars like Fred and The Annoying Orange (“Hey apple? Apple? Hey apple?”) launch their own channels.

Many analysts say that in the fight to control smart TVs, Microsoft is winning. XBox 360s flew off the shelves on Black Friday, and that is believed to be due to the combination of better games and price.

Forbes has said Microsoft is on its way to putting cable companies out of business. “Microsoft has just brought the eventual death of the cable box closer,” this article says. “Xbox makes it easier than ever to watch all your shows online.”

With so many major players such as Google, Sony and Apple in the mix, the opportunities for public relations campaigns are endless, much the way YouTube opened up a pathway to the public by sidestepping traditional media. The apps and offerings are already building.

GetGlue and TVGuide.com have already taken TV social. App-developer Flingo, which makes “super apps for smart TVs,” has announced it will work with Collective Digital Studio to bring YouTube celebs like Fred, iJustine, and the aforementioned orange to TV screens across the world. And GoogleTV could pick up steam with improved software. The company has already redesigned YouTube to emphasize channels, including more premium channels.

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