What did the television look like? You know, the one on which grandfather watched, It’s a Wonderful Life for the first time? While the movie is a timeless classic, the way we consume it is anything but.
Family time is not entirely dead. But it is on life support. Sitting around a table and eating a meal, then taking up places in the family room to watch TV is almost unheard of. Some kids have never experienced it. And others who have hardly see the point.
It is not that families are broken as older generations might assume. It is just that families are different. And there is nothing wrong with different. Families come in a lot more configurations than they did 50 years ago. Housing is different, the economics of family is different.
Each family member is more empowered than ever before. Families still consume content. But they don’t necessarily do it at the same time and on the same devices. Christmas movies are alive and well. This is how modern families watch them:
Remember the days when schedules dominated television viewing? You had to know exactly what station and time your program would be aired. If you are a chord-cutter and get OTA broadcasts, you may still be in the position of having to wrangle schedules. OTA DVRs are not yet common appliances.
But we have a number of devices that can help us keep up with all kinds of schedules apart from the computer in the office. A quick look at such sites as smartwatches.org will introduce you to a vast array of wrist wearables that among other things, can keep you notified of just about anything you want to know in the most natural and unobtrusive way possible.
Wrist wearables, also known as smartwatches, are one of the best ways to track all kinds of bite-sized information from weather to your next appointment. Apple does not make the only smartwatch you won’t be ashamed of wearing. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and from a variety of vendors at a variety of price points.
Regardless of how you watch the show, you never have to miss a moment when you have a smartwatch that can keep track of a lot more than time.
Few people have the luxury of being in a certain place at a certain time to consume a particular piece of entertainment. The situation becomes impossible if your top 5 Christmas movies are on at the same time. Fortunately, this is mostly a solved problem for the modern geek.
All you need is some type of On Demand service. There are a number of them from which to choose. Among the most popular are:
- Amazon Prime Video
- PlayStation Vue
While not a streaming service, iTunes has one of the largest electronic repositories of TV shows and movies that you can watch at any time on almost any Apple product with a screen. DirecTV is close to putting out a streaming service that does not require a traditional cable subscription. DirecTV even has an Apple Watch app for added convenience. These days, a good On Demand service is a must.
On the Go
There is a good chance your kid will be in one of those lopsided sports matches where the losing team does so in epic fashion. Not saying that would be the best time to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas. But there are worse things you could be doing, like trying to pay attention to the game.
Three of the top 10 tablets have iPad in the name depending on who is keeping the tally. The mini might actually have the best mix of screen size and portability for content consumption. But there are plenty of less expensive Android tablets out there that can handle the job just fine.
Today’s jumbo-sized smartphone will likely be tablet enough for most mobile movie watchers. Wide color, insanely long battery life, and always-on LTE makes iPhone 7 Plus class devices an excellent choice.
The modern family still enjoys the classics. They just do so with the aid of a smartwatch, an On-Demand service, and a mobile tablet.