Bonnaroo streaming to my TV thanks to YouTube, Apple, Dell, Intel, Samsung and my Couch

Look at that photo on the left.

You are looking at the future. Well, actually you are looking at the present. Or, at least it was a “live stream” when I photographed it an hour or so ago.

Technically speaking, you are seeing a photo of a Samsung HD TV displaying one of two channels of the Bonnaroo Music (and Art) Festival being live-streamed via YouTube. (For the record, Bonnaroo is an hour or so southeast from where I’m writing this, but about two or three decades away from the last time I desired to be in such a massive crowd.)

The reason you are able to see that photo of the concert on my TV has nothing to do with the way we’ve all thought of “Live TV” in the past — as in, what we see on TV being from a cable or broadcast network.

These two Bonaroo channels are flowing into my TV thanks to internet tubes and an array of gadgets that are quite simple to sync up.

Let’s see: I’m using wifi to pull the stream into my iPhone and then, using Apple Air Play, the video and audio is being magically beamed to an AppleTV and into my TV. (I could make this happen easier if I had a Mac Mini hooked up to the TV, but what fun would that be?)

The sound is HD quality and is being pumped out via a Yamaha Soundbar I have connected to my TV (because it fit precisely in the space I had to work with).

Oh, yeah. On the website, it says Intel and Dell are the sponsors, so I guess I should thank them, also.

The picture is of varying quality. It can go from being near HD quality to being pixelated  (unlike the near constant HD quality of the Masters Golf Trounament which I watched using their iPhone app in much the same way).

So why is this the future? Well, I’ll let Doc Searls explainwhat will happen when Apple’s screen resolution is added to the mix and how it will turn “the Net’s top into TV’s bottom.”

Did I mention I haven’t seen any commercials?

Did I mention they have two feeds from different stages?

Did I mention how comfortable and air-conditioned the family room in my house is compared to hanging out with 85,000 concert goers in the heat and/or rain that seems never to bother those who actually go to Bonaroo, bless their hearts.

  • Hi Rex,

    YouTube did the same with a livestream from Cochella here on the West Coast. As I sat there taking screenshots on my laptop it struck me, this is almost as good as being there.

  • I’m sure those who enjoy “being there” would disagree, but for those who can’t be there or might want to enjoy the music but not the ambiance and “experience,” what we’re seeing with the feeds from Cochella and Bonnaroo and with the technical advance Doc Searls outlines — the convergence of all these things are  delivering on a promise / prediction I’ve heard (and wanted) for nearly three decades. I have been to live sporting events like the Super Bowl and the Masters and nothing will replicate the experience digitally. However, with these still early-generation efforts with Cochella, Bonnaroo, the Masters app and as we’ll see with the Olympics in a few weeks, we’re having the opportunity to have different experiences that are just as real and authentic — but are a different kind of “being there.” As my wife often tells me, “You must be glad you’re living now.”