Edinburgh International Television Festival: EY forecast

22 August 2016

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The Edinburgh International Television festival is due to start later this week bringing together business leaders to debate the future direction of the industry.  EY makes its predictions on some of the hot topics at the event:

The implications of Brexit

Martyn Whistler, EY’s Media & Entertainment Lead Analyst, says: “Brexit and what it means for the TV industry is the dominant theme of conversation in the sector at the moment. What we must remember is that the quality of content produced in the UK is world class and that won’t change, the expertise and experience are both here.  Edinburgh will prove, once again, how vibrant and innovative the UK’s production sector continues to be. 

“The message must be that we don’t yet know the full outcome of Brexit but that the industry should use this time to prepare and get on the front foot.  Every industry will be drawing their lines in the sand, making demands about new tax incentives, targeted investments or favourable regulation.  The festival is an opportunity to debate, as an industry, what are those things that matter.”

Embracing innovations

“Sometimes we have to take a step back and remind ourselves just how much the UK is an innovator in TV production and viewing.  The current hot-topic is virtual and augmented reality and it will be interesting to see what role these play in the future.  Across-the –board, investors are ploughing money into these technologies.  Global tech powerhouses, incumbent studios and aggressive start-ups are all investing.  We’ve long-since known that technology doesn’t work unless it comes with the content to engage consumers.  It’s interesting to hear how festival goers are gearing up to make the most of these new technologies.

Engaging Gen Z

Whistler adds: “Recently, the conversation has moved beyond millennials to talk about Generation Z.  At EY, we’ve done a lot of work looking at the expectations of this generation and how it’s different from anything we’ve seen before.

“In recent years we’ve heard a lot of debate about whether younger generations have truly different media habits or whether they will ultimately conform to the behaviours of their parents.  It’s a moot point.  The audience experience, even just a few years from now, will be so technologically different.  Even those things we recognise, such as the television in the sitting room, will be interacted with in very different, much more personal and immersive ways”.