So today I got to play with Joost for the first time. Joost is basically an internet TV platform. Imagine the entertainment value of TV combined with the interactive possibilities of the internet and you have Joost.
It is currently in the beta stage but you don't need to download any of the files you actually watch. Joost was created by the people behind Kazaa and Skype so it is based on peer to peer file sharing software. This basically means that it doesn't require anything like the same bandwidth that services such as YouTube require (when for example everyone wants to watch the same video) and it helps with ensuring the content can't be stored permanently on anyone's machine, which would be a violation of copyright.
Whenever you are watching a piece of content on Joost, the peer to peer software 'takes' 8 second chunks of that content from other computers in the Joost network. This ensures that there is no one server that is having to push out a huge amount of data; the data demands are shared around the network. You can find out more about the technical details here and also watch the funky 'What's Joost' video here.
For advertisers, this is the holy grail - a platform that allows a fusion of content and advertising. Because Joost is online, it can track what you watch, how long you watch it for and so it can provide advertisers with incredibly accurate targeting, both demographically and attitudinally.
Also, because those Joost boys are ful of the joys of Open Source, developers are being encouraged to produce widgets to sit within Joost to enhance the user experience. 'Extras' that come as standard in the Joost package are Messenger, Channel Chat (talking to people watching what you are watching) and RSS news feeds from the web.
The advertising opportunities are hugely diverse - it opens the door for advertisers to create their own channel. Imagine if L'Oreal were to buy the rights to Desperate Housewives and show it on the L'Oreal channel on Joost? THey could then ensure a fusion of advertising and content - the possibilities for product placement are enormous.
Because it is online, users can click through from adverts to websites and still watch the content in a minimised form.
Also it offers the full accountability that advertisers cherish with internet advertising as it currently stands.
I can't explain how cool Joost is - it is just like watching TV, but with everything the internet can offer.
And as if TV weren't enough, they are looking to launch a mobile platform at some point next year! Internet TV over mobile!
I'm sure I will post more about this, but I would advise trying to get hold of the beta version, or just keeping your ears open for more developments.