Walmart Acquires Vizio & The ECB Challenges Bitcoin | The Brainstorm EP 37

ARK Invest
28 Feb 202425:47

Summary

TLDRThis video covers two main topics: Walmart's potential acquisition of Vio, a budget-friendly TV line, and the European Central Bank's criticism of Bitcoin. Regarding Walmart and Vio, the discussion delves into the implications for players like Roku and Amazon in the rapidly growing connected TV space, examining factors such as market share, consumer preferences, and the importance of operating systems. On Bitcoin, the video analyzes the ECB's critiques, including its alleged use for illicit activities, environmental impact, and investment viability, while presenting counterarguments that challenge these claims. The conversation also touches on Bitcoin's most valid criticisms, its underappreciated deflationary nature, and the potential threats of quantum computing.

Takeaways

  • 😃 Walmart announced plans to acquire Vio, a budget-friendly TV brand with 18 million active accounts and 500 advertising partners, to better integrate with its advertising unit Walmart Connect.
  • 🤔 While Vio's acquisition could threaten Roku's shelf space at Walmart, Roku has diversified its distribution through partnerships with other retailers and its brand reputation for superior operating system experience.
  • 📈 The Connected TV (CTV) space is rapidly growing, with streaming hours increasing while linear TV hours decline, and advertisers shifting budgets from linear TV to CTV.
  • 💡 Key to winning in CTV is achieving scale, engagement, and monetization through first-party data and personalized advertising capabilities.
  • 🌐 CTV presents a global opportunity as it eliminates the need for physical cable infrastructure, with Roku already having a larger install base than major traditional TV providers combined.
  • 💻 The operating system brand (Roku OS, Fire TV, etc.) is becoming more important to consumers than the TV hardware brand itself, similar to mobile operating systems.
  • ⚡ The European Central Bank (ECB) published a blog criticizing Bitcoin on three fronts: lack of use as digital money, unwise investment, and environmental impact of mining.
  • 🚫 Counterarguments refute the ECB's claims, citing Bitcoin's use in underbanked regions, low illicit activity compared to cash, and potential solutions for privacy and quantum computing concerns.
  • 🌍 Bitcoin's deflationary monetary policy and restricted supply over time are underappreciated aspects of its potential value proposition.
  • 🔒 Valid criticisms of Bitcoin include potential privacy/fungibility issues from transaction traceability and the theoretical risk of quantum computing breaking its cryptography, though mitigations exist.

Q & A

  • What is the potential acquisition being discussed in the script?

    -Walmart is considering acquiring Vio, a budget-friendly line of TVs and smart TV operating system called Smartcast TV.

  • What are the key points discussed about Vio?

    -Vio has 18 million active accounts and around 500 direct advertising partners. Acquiring Vio would enable Walmart to more effectively connect with households across the US through its own proprietary line of TVs and integrate it with its advertising unit, Walmart Connect.

  • What are the concerns raised about Roku's position if Walmart acquires Vio?

    -There are concerns that Roku might lose shelf space for its TVs at Walmart stores if Vio becomes Walmart's proprietary TV line. However, the speakers argue that Roku has diversified its distribution through partnerships with other major retailers like Best Buy, Amazon, and Costco.

  • What are the key factors discussed for winning in the CTV (Connected TV) space?

    -The speakers mention three key factors for winning in the CTV space: scale (number of active accounts), engagement (hours streamed), and monetization (advertising and data capabilities).

  • What shift is happening in the TV industry, and what opportunity does it present?

    -There is a significant shift happening from linear TV to streaming TV. While 60% of TV time is now spent on streaming, only 29% of TV advertising budgets are currently directed towards CTV/streaming. This represents a massive opportunity for platforms like Roku to capture more of the linear TV advertising market worth $60-70 billion annually.

  • What is the significance of the TV operating system brands like Roku OS, compared to the TV hardware brands?

    -The speakers argue that the operating system brand (Roku OS, Amazon Fire TV, etc.) is carrying more weight with consumers than the TV hardware brand (TCL, Samsung, etc.). Consumers are seeking out specific operating systems for their user experience and ease of use.

  • What is the European Central Bank's stance on Bitcoin, according to the script?

    -The European Central Bank (ECB) has published blog posts criticizing Bitcoin on three fronts: claiming it is not a viable digital money due to its slow speed and use in criminal activities, questioning its value as an investment, and criticizing its environmental impact due to the energy-intensive proof-of-work mining process.

  • How does the script counter the ECB's claims about Bitcoin's use in illicit activities?

    -The script cites a 2023 report by Chainalysis estimating that only 0.34% of all crypto trading volume is used for illicit activities, including money laundering. It argues that this is extremely low compared to estimates of cash being used for illicit purposes (2-5% for money laundering alone, according to the United Nations).

  • What does the script consider to be the most valid criticism of Bitcoin?

    -The script acknowledges two valid criticisms: 1) Bitcoin's lack of privacy could lead to some coins becoming "tainted" or traded at a discount due to their association with sanctioned entities, and 2) the potential threat of quantum computing breaking Bitcoin's cryptography in the future.

  • According to the script, what is the least appreciated aspect of Bitcoin's value proposition?

    -The script argues that Bitcoin's disinflationary monetary policy, which restricts the supply over time, is underappreciated and misunderstood, especially in comparison to inflationary currencies like the US dollar.

Outlines

00:00

📺 Walmart's Potential Acquisition of Vio's CTV Platform

The discussion revolves around Walmart's plans to acquire Vio, a budget-friendly TV line with its own operating system called SmartCast TV. This acquisition would allow Walmart to better integrate its demand-side platform, Walmart Connect, with households across the US through its proprietary line of TVs. The key points discussed include Vio's 18 million active accounts and 500 advertising partners, Walmart's significant TV sales, and its existing partnership with Roku for the ONN TV brand. The potential threats and implications for players like Roku, Amazon, Google, and Apple in the rapidly growing connected TV (CTV) space are analyzed.

05:01

🌐 The CTV Landscape and Roku's Position

The discussion delves into the larger CTV landscape, highlighting the importance of scale, engagement, and monetization for success. Roku's advantages, such as its 80 million active accounts, 100+ billion streaming hours, and first-party data, are examined. The shift from linear TV to streaming is explored, with statistics indicating a 21% increase in global streaming hours on Roku and a 16% decrease in linear TV hours. However, only 29% of TV budgets are currently directed towards CTV and streaming, leaving room for growth as advertisers follow viewers. The evolving role of TV operating systems is likened to that of cable operators, with potential for app store-like revenue models.

10:03

🏆 Roku's Competitive Edge and Global Opportunity

The conversation focuses on Roku's competitive advantages and its position as a leading player in the CTV space. Despite competition from tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Apple, Roku has managed to edge them out and grow its market share. With an install base larger than the six largest traditional pay-TV providers combined and its status as the number one selling TV operating system for the last five years in the US, Roku's scale is unprecedented. The global opportunity for CTV is also discussed, as it doesn't require physical cable infrastructure, making it accessible to anyone with broadband internet.

15:03

⚡️ Debunking Criticisms Against Bitcoin

The discussion shifts to the European Central Bank's recent blog posts criticizing Bitcoin. The key criticisms addressed include claims that Bitcoin is not digital money due to its slow transaction speeds and alleged use for criminal activities, that it's not a wise investment due to lack of dividends and cash flows, and that its proof-of-work consensus mechanism is environmentally harmful. The conversation provides counterarguments, citing low estimates of Bitcoin's use in illicit activities compared to cash, and addressing concerns about privacy, fungibility, and the potential impact of quantum computing on Bitcoin's cryptography.

20:04

💰 Bitcoin's Deflationary Monetary Policy and Underappreciated Value

The discussion explores what the market may be underappreciating about Bitcoin's potential. The deflationary and disinflationary nature of Bitcoin's monetary policy is highlighted as an underappreciated aspect, as it restricts supply over time. The implications of a disinflationary asset compared to inflationary currencies like the US dollar are emphasized as a key value proposition that is often misunderstood or underestimated by the market.

25:04

🎬 Closing Remarks

The episode concludes with closing remarks, thanking the guests and the audience for tuning in.

Mindmap

Keywords

💡Connected TV (CTV)

Connected TV (CTV) refers to a television set that is connected to the internet and can stream online content directly from various video streaming services. In the context of the video, CTV is discussed as a rapidly growing space where major companies like Roku, Amazon, and now Walmart are vying for a significant presence. CTV enables advertisers to target households with personalized ads, similar to digital advertising on social media platforms. Examples from the script include Walmart's potential acquisition of Vio, a budget TV brand with a 'smartcast' operating system, and Roku's dominance in the CTV market with its own operating system and branded TVs.

💡Operating System (OS)

An operating system (OS) is the software that manages a device's hardware and software resources and provides common services for computer programs. In the context of the video, the OS for smart TVs and CTV devices is discussed as a crucial factor in determining the user experience and engagement. Major players like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Vio's smartcast OS compete in this space. The video suggests that consumers are now more attracted to the OS brand rather than the TV brand itself, as evidenced by Roku's success in selling its OS-powered TVs. Examples from the script include discussions around the superiority of Roku's OS over Vio's smartcast and the importance of having a robust, user-friendly OS to attract and retain viewers.

💡Advertising

Advertising refers to the activity of promoting a product, service, or brand through various mediums to influence consumer behavior. In the context of the video, advertising on CTV platforms is discussed as a major opportunity and driver for growth in the industry. CTV advertising allows for better targeting and personalization, similar to digital advertising on social media. The video highlights the gap between viewer engagement on streaming platforms and the advertising dollars flowing into those platforms, suggesting a significant growth opportunity. Examples from the script include Walmart's potential acquisition of Vio to better integrate with its advertising unit, Walmart Connect, and the discussion around CTV operating systems acting as 'app stores' with similar revenue models to mobile app stores.

💡Cord-cutting

Cord-cutting refers to the practice of canceling or avoiding traditional cable or satellite TV subscriptions in favor of streaming services and online content. In the video, cord-cutting is discussed as a major trend that is driving the shift from linear TV to streaming platforms and CTV. The script cites statistics showing a decline in linear TV viewing hours and a corresponding increase in streaming hours on platforms like Roku. Cord-cutting is presented as a driver for the growth of CTV and the reason why advertisers are following viewers to these platforms.

💡Market Share

Market share refers to the percentage of a market that is controlled by a particular company or product. In the context of the video, market share is discussed in relation to the competition among major players in the CTV space, such as Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Vio (through Walmart's potential acquisition). The script highlights Roku's dominance in terms of market share, with its operating system being the number one selling TV OS in the US for the past five years. Market share is presented as a crucial factor in attracting advertisers and achieving scale in the CTV industry.

💡Engagement

Engagement refers to the degree to which consumers are actively involved with a product, service, or platform. In the video, engagement is discussed as one of the key factors, along with scale and monetization, for winning in the CTV space. The script cites Roku's high engagement hours (over 100 billion hours streamed) as a significant advantage. Engagement is presented as a crucial metric for attracting advertisers and achieving success in the CTV industry, as it reflects the level of user interaction and time spent on a particular platform.

💡Monetization

Monetization refers to the process of generating revenue from a product, service, or platform. In the context of the video, monetization is discussed as a key factor for success in the CTV space, alongside scale and engagement. The script highlights the potential for CTV platforms to monetize through advertising, similar to mobile app stores, by leveraging their position as the 'gateway' to the TV viewing experience. Monetization strategies, such as advertising and potential revenue models like app store 'take rates,' are presented as crucial for the major CTV players to capitalize on the growing market.

💡Scale

Scale refers to the size or extent of something, often in relation to growth or expansion. In the video, scale is discussed as one of the three key factors, along with engagement and monetization, for winning in the CTV space. The script cites Roku's scale, with 80 million active accounts and a larger install base than the six largest traditional pay-TV providers combined, as a significant advantage. Scale is presented as crucial for attracting advertisers and achieving market dominance in the rapidly growing CTV industry.

💡Streaming

Streaming refers to the process of delivering multimedia content, such as video and audio, over the internet in a continuous flow, allowing users to consume the content as it is being delivered. In the video, streaming is discussed in the context of the shift from traditional linear TV to online platforms like CTV. The script highlights the increase in streaming hours on platforms like Roku and the corresponding decline in linear TV viewing hours, driven by the trend of cord-cutting. Streaming is presented as the future of content consumption, enabling personalization and targeted advertising opportunities for CTV platforms.

💡Branding

Branding refers to the process of creating a unique name, design, and identity for a product or company, with the aim of differentiating it from competitors and establishing recognition and loyalty among consumers. In the video, branding is discussed in the context of CTV operating systems, with the script suggesting that consumers are now more attracted to the OS brand (e.g., Roku) than the TV brand itself. The success of Roku's branded TVs is cited as an example of the importance of branding in the CTV space, as consumers actively seek out the Roku experience and user interface.

Highlights

Walmart announced its plans to acquire Vio, a budget-friendly line of TVs with an operating system called smartcast TV, enabling Walmart to better connect with households across the US through its proprietary line of TVs and integrate it with its advertising unit.

Vio has 18 million active accounts and around 500 direct advertising partners.

Roku has been hedging its risk by announcing its own line of first-party TVs and diversifying its distribution channels beyond Walmart.

Branding and operating system superiority matter for consumer preference, as evidenced by Roku's popularity and better user experience compared to Vio.

The shift from linear TV to streaming is happening rapidly, with global hours streamed on Roku up 21% and Roku Channel up 63%, while linear TV hours were down 16%.

Although 60% of TV time is now spent on streaming, only 29% of TV budgets are directed towards CTV and streaming, indicating a large gap to be closed.

The opportunity in the CTV space is not just to cannibalize the linear TV market but also to leverage the personalization and targeting capabilities of digital advertising.

TV operating systems like Roku, Vio, and Amazon Fire TV are now in a position similar to cable operators two decades ago, acting as the gateway to the TV viewing experience and operating app stores.

The European Central Bank (ECB) published a blog criticizing Bitcoin on three fronts: it's not digital money, it's not a viable investment, and its proof-of-work consensus mechanism pollutes the environment.

The report claims that Bitcoin is mostly used for criminal activity and money laundering, but the data suggests it's only 0.34% of all crypto trading volume in 2023.

The most valid criticism of Bitcoin could be its lack of privacy and potential loss of fungibility due to transaction traceability, leading to a scenario of 'tainted' or discounted Bitcoin.

Another valid criticism is the potential for quantum computing to break Bitcoin's cryptography, but there are potential solutions like forking to a quantum-resistant system.

The least appreciated aspect of Bitcoin is its disinflationary monetary policy and the impact of restricted supply on its adoption as an asset and currency.

The Market discounts budget TVs as commodities, but Roku's success shows that branding and operating system superiority matter to consumers when choosing a smart TV.

Scale, engagement, and monetization are key to winning in the CTV space, and Roku has advantages in all three areas with its large install base, high engagement hours, and first-party data for targeted advertising.

Transcripts

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[Music]

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hello everyone and welcome back to

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episode 37 of the brainstorm today I'm

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joined with Andrew Kim and David puel

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we're going to be going over Walmart

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potentially acquiring Vio as well as the

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ecb's campaign against Bitcoin but first

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let's start with Walmart acquiring Vio

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potentially acquiring Vio Andrew why

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don't you te this up for

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us sure so last Tuesday Walmart

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announced its plans to acquire Vio which

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is a budget friendly line of TVs um well

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it offers a a line of budget friendly

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TVs and a operating system known as the

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smartcast TV and this would enable

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Walmart to more effectively um connect

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with households across the US um uh

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through its own proprietary line of

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TVs um and more tightly integrate that

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with its native uh demand side platform

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uh Walmart connect which is its uh

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advertising

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unit yeah it's interesting that Walmart

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is getting into this space um the

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numbers here on viio at least Vio has 18

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million active accounts and around 500

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Direct advertising Partners this is what

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was disclosed in the press release um

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and Walmart is one of the largest

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retailers in the country and sells a

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significant amount of televisions each

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year and they have made other

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Partnerships in the space notably uh

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Roku and their on platform so Walmart

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runs a brand of TVs called

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ONN and they use roku's operating system

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to power that obviously that is now

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being called into question and I think

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Roku and the story behind Roku is being

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called into question by many but I

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wanted to ask you Andrew what are your

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thoughts there I have some opinions here

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so let's let's go back and forth uh just

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what you think uh around the Potential

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Threat of Vio and Walmart now entering

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in the CTV space not just for Roku but

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also Amazon Google Apple you know this

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is a very large industry and growing

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rapidly and it's you know clear why

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Walmart wants to have a more significant

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presence in the space but what are your

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thoughts yeah I mean I think when Roku

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first announced its line of as first

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party like labeled uh TVs back in I

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guess January of this or or sorry

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January of last year was it yeah yeah

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yeah um like it it basically signaled to

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us that Roku is like properly hedging

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and already thinking about hedging its

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risk to any single distribution partner

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right and Roku is on the shelves at

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various uh large L distribution Partners

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such as you know Target Best Buy Costco

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and um while Roku has historically

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depended on Walmart for the distribution

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of its budget friendly Smart TVs in the

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past uh Roku is in a much better and

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more diverse Diversified position than

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before so from a shelf space uh

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consideration I think um it's okay right

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I mean yes like Roku might lose shelf

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space to Vio in Walmart but um it also

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come uh begs us to ask begs third party

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distribution uh platforms to ask now

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that Vio is no longer an agnostic TV

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right it's now tied directly to Walmart

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will will they carry it will Amazon

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carry Vio will will Target carry Vio

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right um because it would put them in

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direct competition while favoring direct

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competition on its own platform um and I

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guess on the advertising

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side scale matters right Roku has 80

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million active accounts um

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Vio um chugging along at 18 million

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which is still you know impressive scale

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with a lot of data and I'm sure um

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Walmart was attracted to that but in the

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aggregate I would imagine that most

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advertisers are very much interested in

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continuing to reach the Roku household

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so I think even from an advertising

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perspective um they're going to be okay

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yeah and it's I think you brought up a

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few interesting points here one just on

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distribution and you I think you're

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correct it was January of last year at

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uh CES where Roku began to announce

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their branded line of first-party

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televisions and that was originally in

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Partnership exclusively at Best Buy now

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they've since expanded that and so those

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first party televisions will not only be

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sold in Best Buy but Amazon and Costco

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as well so they are you know hedging

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their distribution risk in branding

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their own televisions building their own

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televisions and then Distributing

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through other major retailers um and I

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think you're right to say that you know

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one thing that has uh always attracted

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us to this story around Roku is this

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idea around the Switzerland uh and being

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that party within the CTV space that

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isn't tied to any single um you know

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large tech company or major retailer so

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when you when you talk about you know

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Vio might gain shelf space in Walmart

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but they're likely to lose out in Target

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and Amazon I can't you know that that is

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actually how the the space has shaped up

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today where you know Amazon Fire TVs are

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not sold in other major retailers

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because of the threat that Amazon

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imposes on them from a retail

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perspective generally so there is that

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kind of awkward Dynamic at play between

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these retailers and their you know sole

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Solutions in the space I think when we

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look at at the story and what is really

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important to winning in the CTV space

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and this is something that's you know

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largely talked about it's you need scale

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you need engagement and then you need

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monetization and we look at you know who

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has the largest scale today it's not

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viio it's Roku Amazon Fire those are the

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two major players um then you look at

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engagement if you look at the engagement

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hours on Roku it's 100 billion plus

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hours streamed um so this is significant

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scale and significant engagement and

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then you're talking about uh first-party

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data and the advantages that come with

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it from a monetization angle so I think

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the story really you know makes sense

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once you have all three of those and

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then just understanding the backdrop of

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the CTV space this is still a very nent

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space um if you look at some of the

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numbers we were given and I'm going to

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read these off so I don't get any of the

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figures wrong but one you have this

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shift from linear into streaming

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happening at the current moment and it

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has been happening at a more more at a

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at a faster clip since Co um so we've

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heard about cord cutting and now we're

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starting to see advertisers uh follow

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through as well but during the fourth

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quarter um when we see uh Global hours

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um streamed on the Roku platform that

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was up almost 21% and 63% for the Roku

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Channel but if you look at linear TV

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hours that was down almost 16% on a

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year-over-year basis so from engagement

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standpoint you're seeing this share

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shift but then when you look at the

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amount of dollars being spent in these

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individual ecosystems one you have 60%

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of TV time now happening on streaming

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specifically um but only 29% of TV

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budgets are directed towards CTV and

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streaming so there is still this large

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gap that needs to close between where

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the eyeballs are and where the dollars

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being spent are and I think that's

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really important to understanding why we

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think this space is so attractive long

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term the you know the linear TV Market

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is a 6070 billion a year industry and we

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believe all of that is Tech is going to

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flow over into the CTV space but because

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CTV is built on digital rails it allows

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you to personalize like social media

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companies it allows you to Target in a

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in a in a better fashion more more

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personalization better targeting

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everything that comes with digital

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advertising is now being built in the

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CTV space so not only is the opportunity

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just to cannibalize all of the dollars

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being spent in the linear TV space it's

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what can you take beyond that into the

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digital advertising space so growing

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market share as a whole I think is the

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longer term opportunity and we think you

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know just to to to settle this and and

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and give kind of the the cohesive

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narrative the TV operating systems Roku

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Vizio Amazon on fire they now sit in the

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same position that cable operators sat

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two decades ago where they were the

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endpoint Distributors for Content that

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means they're the gateway to your TV

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viewing experience and that is a very

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powerful position to be sitting in

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because you can operate like an App

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Store so we think Roku Amazon Vio

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they're going to be operating app stores

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and they're going to have similar take

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rates that we see in the mobile app

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ecosystem but that's now going be ported

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over into the television ecosystem and

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so it's a extremely attractive

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opportunity long term obviously there's

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a ton of risk moving pieces very Dynamic

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space as we're seeing right everyone

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wants a piece of this pie because the

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pie is growing so quickly and it's a

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massive opportunity from advertising and

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from just influence being in the

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household being the primary screen in

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the household outside of the mobile

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phone is extremely important and so

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that's why you're seeing retailers like

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Walmart want wanting to have influence

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here and Amazon and Google and and and

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apple and it's you know an interesting

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uh you know case study here Roku has

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been kind of the Underdog Story

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throughout this because you've had Tech

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giants like Amazon Google and apple

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breathing down roku's neck since the

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beginning of the story and yet Roku has

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been able to Edge all of them out and

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actually grow its market share um you

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know since its founding and now it's in

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80 million households and it's the

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number one selling TV operating system

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for the last five years in the US and

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it's install based and this goes back to

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the whole you know portion on scale it's

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larger than the six largest traditional

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payv providers combined that's you know

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we're talking about unprecedented

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numbers in terms of television

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distribution in the US but this is also

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a global story right the difference

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between uh over-the-top or CTV is you

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don't have to go around the country

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laying cable to enter into homes it is

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just you know you're if you're connected

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to Wi-Fi Broadband you're instantly you

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have access to everything that CTV uh

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offers so it's an extremely uh uh large

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opportunity because it's not just uh us

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it's it's Global as well I know that was

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a

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lot no no I think you raised really

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great points all throughout but like

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branding matters right I I I hate that I

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feel like the Market discounts budget

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TVs as like a barebones commodity but if

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you look at roku's advantage and

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leadership as seen in the um sales

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figures right number one in three

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countries um it it shows us that

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branding matters the Roku brand is very

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much UB ubiquitous right and um it's not

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as if consumers are completely

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nonchalant about um purchasing about um

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deciding what kind of smart TV to

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purchase once they step into a store and

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uh we agree with the notion that even if

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Walmart um you know significantly

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decreases shelf space allocated to Roku

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uh in favor of Vio consumers will

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continue to look for Roku uh operating

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systems and it's not just a branding

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issue it's an overall operating system

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superiority issue too right and that the

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Roku experience um is unmatched I think

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um with respect to how uh smart other

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Smart TVs operate and I would encourage

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listeners to just search up Roku versus

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Vio go to any subreddit and you will see

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that

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people um by far prefer Roku over Vio

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because of all the issues that smartcast

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has presented whether it be connecting

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to external devices um uh doing um uh

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like AirPlay or or all these different

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Services right or or or compatibility

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with different streaming apps as well um

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it seems as though Roku is um at a much

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larger Advantage from a uh just

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technical perspective as well so I would

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imagine that with this acquisition

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Walmart is inheriting a lot of tech debt

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to consider um and I mean we'll see how

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they execute

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but I think they're in in a much more

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disadvantaged position than um I guess

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initial Market reactions would

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warrant yeah and I think you bring up a

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very interesting point and this is I

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think where we'll end and move over to

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David um because I want to be mindful of

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everyone's time it it is it is our

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thesis that the operating system brand

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so the Roku OS smartcast uh Amazon fire

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that now carries more weight with

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consumers than the television brand so

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the OEM Partners so tcls the high sense

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the sharp Phillips Samsung and some of

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these have their own operating systems

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built in right Roku has its own first

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party but then it also works with third

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party um that is a shift that we think

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has been taking place and is going to be

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where you see the real share shifts and

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winners is at the operating system level

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it's the consumer seeking out as you

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said Andrew seeking out the operating

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system not the television right they

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want the Roku Opera system they want to

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see Roku City they want that ease ofuse

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navigation uiux that comes with a Sleek

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operating system that is what we're

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we're going to see it's you know it's

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it's been played out in Mobile right

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people are very attached to the IOS

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operating system um you know maybe it is

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also the hardware elements to it but it

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is mostly the operating system and we

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think that's now playing out in CTV so I

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think yeah that's a it's a it's a very

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important point for for everyone to

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understand because this isn't what was

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happening in television before it was

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you know an entirely different space but

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this is now we're bringing television

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into the digital age so um David we're

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we're GNA kick it over to you tell us

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what's going on with the ECB they're not

play15:15

fans of Bitcoin what what's up with

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that yeah so last week the European

play15:22

Central Bank

play15:24

published The Last of a series or the

play15:28

very least the second of um a series of

play15:32

blogs criticizing Bitcoin and its core

play15:35

value

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proposition um it kind of regurgitates

play15:40

the last block post from November and in

play15:43

essence it it bashes Bitcoin in

play15:49

by in in three dimensions you could say

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the first one is uh claiming that

play15:54

Bitcoin is not uh digital money because

play15:57

it's slow

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uh and in addition it's used mostly uh

play16:02

or at least that's the spirit of the the

play16:05

block piece it's mostly used for

play16:07

criminal activity and money

play16:09

laundering then number two Bitcoin is is

play16:12

not a viable or a wise investment given

play16:16

that it has no dividends no class

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flows and uh if comparing to other

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Commodities it has no uh it's a

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non-productive asset right and number

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three

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Bitcoin the the consensus mechanism of

play16:33

Bitcoin proof of work meaning the mining

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the mining use of electricity to protect

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the

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network um the hash rate uh their claim

play16:44

is that this pollutes the environment

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and will continue to do so at an

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increasing rate into the

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future uh given the historical um rise

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of hash Bitcoin hash rates um over the

play16:57

last 15 years

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um the post was highly uh excoriated and

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and debunked on on Twitter it got one of

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the you know the permanent commentaries

play17:12

on on the original tweets correct

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correct it got one of those uh pretty

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much

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citing um you know contrarian sources

play17:22

perhaps even more valid sources on their

play17:25

overall claims uh and it also goes to

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one of our own

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Publications published in mid

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2021 uh it's called the bunking common

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Bitcoin myths we already kind of address

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um exactly this and and a few other um

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talking points that most Skeptics have

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done um on bitcoin

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historically um just to give you a a

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high level of the way we at ARC see

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those uh you know the counter claim to

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to those initial uh points given by the

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ECB uh first off we we believe that

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Bitcoin is a Still Remains a censorship

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persistent Network which is pretty

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essential especially in developing

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nations that have no access to to the a

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proper back banking system and to

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Stronger currencies like the

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USD

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um tackling the the topic of fistic AC

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ity as of the report of 2023 by Chain

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analysis uh it's

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0.34% uh of all crypto trading volume

play18:39

it's used estimated to be used for

play18:41

illicit activity including money

play18:43

laundering um so in review that's

play18:45

extremely low especially if you compare

play18:47

it to some estimations of how much cash

play18:50

you Dollar Cash is used for elicit

play18:53

activity me you know you you have the 2

play18:56

to

play18:56

5% uh estimated by the United Nations

play18:59

for money laundering and that's just

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money laundering not um other um illicit

play19:06

activity and other like much more um

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aggressive

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estimations like the one um I believe

play19:15

it's um a Harvard Economist called

play19:18

Kenneth rof he wrote a book called The

play19:21

Curse of cash uh where he by the process

play19:25

of elimination calculates that up to a

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third of the Dollar Cash in the world is

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used for illicit activity where at the

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very least just uh non- kyc activity

play19:36

right meaning you know tax avoidance etc

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etc so by any standard um we think the

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claim is quite um

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unimpressive and uh a little bit

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disingenuous

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interview David I want to ask you we

play19:55

actually we had youen on a few weeks

play19:56

back and we asked him this question

play19:59

which is you know we hear a lot of these

play20:03

um common Bitcoin myths and you know

play20:06

these uh these criticisms of Bitcoin and

play20:09

the network of th those out there what

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do you think is the most valid and then

play20:15

how would you debunk it um like in your

play20:18

opinion what is the most valid criticism

play20:20

of Bitcoin and then how do you respond

play20:23

when you hear

play20:25

it that's a great question and

play20:29

the I think two the top two that have

play20:32

some validity but on a longer term basis

play20:35

one is um Bitcoin is not private private

play20:38

enough therefore it may lose fungibility

play20:41

meaning since you can track the

play20:43

transactions quite accurately you know

play20:46

elliptic and Analysis have such an

play20:48

infrastructure and know how of how to

play20:50

track um elicit or any activity in the

play20:54

network for forensics and onchain

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archaeology at an given time

play21:00

um the there's a scenario where

play21:04

increasingly so some of the Bitcoin may

play21:06

become quote unquote tainted or um Can

play21:10

can be traded at discount because it has

play21:12

been touched by an entity in Russia or

play21:14

Iran or North

play21:16

Korea um now uh perhaps the counter

play21:21

claim to that is you would have an a

play21:23

scenario where you would have that

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discount or perhaps like um byoc Market

play21:31

globally where you have let's say us

play21:34

allies or unsanctioned entities trading

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with each other at a normal price and

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then sanction Bitcoin we call it like

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poison Bitcoin trading in its own e

play21:47

ecosystem uh between the entities that

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are sanctioned by the us or something

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like that or uh even in addition to that

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you have what is considered consider the

play21:58

poison Bitcoin perhaps losing some value

play22:01

and staying dormant at the end of it and

play22:04

therefore subtracting from the total

play22:05

Supply and and um establishing through

play22:08

time a little bit of Supply shock that

play22:12

makes it so that incentives since that

play22:14

Bitcoin is pretty much tainted for all

play22:16

time or at least until the US releases

play22:18

the sanctions it becomes dormant and

play22:21

therefore not traded and it's subtracted

play22:24

from the total circulating Supply that's

play22:27

one and the one is uh Quantum Quantum um

play22:30

potentially breaking um encryption now

play22:34

this is a topic for a much longer

play22:37

discussion but in essence the claim is

play22:39

you know Quantum is going to

play22:42

be um successful in Breaking bit Bitcoin

play22:46

cryptography um now there's two vectors

play22:49

for uh for attacking um for Quantum

play22:53

entity attack in Bitcoin one is uh the

play22:55

proof of work mechanism or the mining

play22:58

uh side of things um in our view that's

play23:01

very unlikely given the the extremely

play23:04

high amount of hash rate that Bitcoin

play23:06

has today and most likely will continue

play23:08

to have into the future um but even even

play23:12

on top of that there's mechanisms when

play23:14

you can enhance proof of work um

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into to have more resistance again uh a

play23:21

Quantum minor the other part is more

play23:23

worrisome meaning the elliptic curve

play23:26

that is embedded in the signal scheme of

play23:28

Bitcoin living um by some estimates

play23:33

above 20% of the supply including the

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satosi coins uh and unprocess

play23:38

transactions um vulnerable to a Quantum

play23:41

attack now that's also we expect a

play23:44

little bit down the line into the future

play23:47

and on top of that you can also solve

play23:49

that in which the network could Fork um

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we have enough time for that and Fork

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into um a system that is quantum

play23:59

resistant um meaning instead of using

play24:02

elliptic curve as your cryptographic

play24:04

security you use hash based or lce based

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most likely hash based um public

play24:12

cryptography to protect the network um

play24:14

against that sort of attack and then

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we'll we'll end on this question I want

play24:19

to flip the prior question on its head

play24:21

what do you think is the least

play24:24

appreciated or what does the market um

play24:27

miss when understanding the potential of

play24:30

Bitcoin so what is the least appreciated

play24:33

value that Bitcoin holds in your eyes

play24:37

today um I know it's a popular aspect of

play24:42

Bitcoin uh but I I still think it's

play24:45

underappreciated which is the the

play24:47

monetary policy of it uh it's

play24:50

deflationary this inflationary quality

play24:53

and the way it keeps restricting Supply

play24:57

from the from the system um over a

play25:00

period of about you

play25:04

know 30 40 years or so um I think this

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has impact in the asset and its adoption

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that people just keep Mis

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misunderstanding uh to a great extent um

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they have no notion on how a

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disinflationary asset compares to an

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inflationary one especially as a

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currency um like the the US

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dollar interesting okay David Andrew

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thank you so much and everyone that has

play25:36

listened tuned in watching on YouTube we

play25:39

appreciate it as always uh that is our

play25:41

show Sam will be back next week um but

play25:45

thank you everyone

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