Time Warner held a conference call to discuss its first half financial performance this morning.
Despite lower revenues and profits, Jeff Bewkes, Time Warner’s CEO, said he is excited about TW’s future as a “pure content company.”
Part of that future appears to be “TV Everywhere,” the concept Bewkes has touted for months as entertainment industry’s answer to so-called micropayments in which cable subscribers would be allowed to watch programming on mobile and broadband devices at no additional cost.
“It is the right model for consumers,” Bewkes said during the call. “Increasingly, consumers want to be able to watch programs when they want, where they want to watch them, and on whichever device they choose.”
More than that, Bewkes said, the concept is “right for the industry – it builds on cable programmers successful dual revenue stream business model, helping the continued investment in high quality programming” and would allow programming “from broad appeal to niche to succeed financially.”
He said Time Warner — which struck a trial deal with Comcast for “TV Everywhere” earlier this year — is in “active discussions with a number of other distributors, cable and satellite distributors to do the exact same thing.” But he wouldn’t disclose who those distributors are.
Bewkes said the success of HBO On Demand indicates that the market is ready for the concept. (Bewkes, it’s helpful to note, truly bleeds HBO blood, moving up the ranks as its COO, CFO and eventually CEO between 1986 and 2002.)
“We think it’s a very powerful and pretty obvious natural evolution of what consumers will easily embrace."
However, Bewkes admitted, most consumers will continue to watch programming on TVs “for the foreseeable future.”