The Wall Street Journal has been creating video content for quite a while now, both archived on its website but also live under its The News Hub banner. Today the paper launched a new iPad app that brings this content including live streaming to Apple's tablet.
The app, WSJ Live, is free to download and does not require a subscription to the newspaper. It is essentially live television that bypasses actual broadcasting, and so is a very smart use of the technology and possibilities of the tablet. Currently six advertisers have already signed up to sponsor the app and run spots during programming: Aetna, AT&T, Citi Simplicity, Cognizant, FedEx, and Fidelity.
What the app lacks, however, is the ability to stream the video content to an Apple TV for viewing on big screen TVs. iPad 2 owners, however, could use their tablet's ability to mirror the display to accomplish the same thing.
But you will see WSJ Live in more places than just the iPad. Although there is no Android app right now, the WSJ Live "app" will be added to Google TV, Hulu and Roku, as well as pre-installed on some smart TVs from Samsung, Panasonic and Sony.
If I were an executive at a cable company I would clearly see the writing on the wall as more and more media outlets begin to launch programming that bypasses the traditional carriers and attempts to reach viewers directly through their devices – whether those are televisions or, as in this case, a tablet.