By Danielle Silvia
Campus life at the College is always changing, and a recent addition to technology in student’s everyday lives is adding to those changes. The new type of cable system on campus is PhiloTV, which operates by using television through the internet instead of through an ordinary television. While PhiloTV proposes benefits, there are also some negative outcomes, resulting in a neutral effect.
A benefit of this new television system is the addition of a personal digital video recorder (DVR), which allows students to record television shows or movies and then watch them at a later date. This is one of PhiloTV’s strongest features. As a college student, I typically have a lot of work to do during popular air times, so recording my favorite series and being able to watch it later when I have time to relax is very appealing.
In addition, what makes PhiloTV a positive advancement in technology at the College is the feature of high definition quality on most channels. This is very exciting for many students because the high quality enhances the colors and the overall setting of the television show or movie. What amazes me is that this feature works on both computers and a downloadable app for PhiloTV. The app and website administer all of the same effects and features. When I tried watching on both the website and app, the quality, sound and speed of PhiloTV were spot-on.
PhiloTV is also free to on-campus residential students at the College and is, in my opinion, an enormous benefit. So many people are required to pay for television platforms, such as Netflix or Hulu, while PhiloTV is simply free as long as you live on campus. Over spring break, I found out that neither the app nor the website works from anywhere else besides the campus. When I attempted to open the app at home and watch television, I wasn’t allowed to, since I was not at the College. I was disappointed in this fact, as I will be commuting to campus next year and I will miss having my television with me wherever I go.
There is another downside to PhiloTV, which is the fact that the campus no longer operates by cable television. One night, I wanted to lie on my bed and enjoy television like I did in the “good old days.” But then I learned that the cable through televisions does not operate anymore and that a television can only be used if it is connected to a computer through PhiloTV. As impressed as I have been with PhiloTV, it truly disappoints me to not be able to enjoy television as it always once was. In fact, this shows not only the College’s movement toward technology, but also the world’s. For example, almost everyone owns a smartphone, most people prefer mobile media rather than a paper copy of the news and cellphones have dominated landline phones. Thus, the addition of PhiloTV and the suspension of “regular” television is just the beginning of so many more replacements due to technology to come.
Is PhiloTV for the better or for the worse? While that answer truly lies in the eye of the beholder, in my opinion, the features of PhiloTV creates a balanced effect. While there are some upsides and downsides to this so-called improvement to technology and the College at large, it comes with the next wave of technology and with that, acceptance for the changes. The features of this new piece of the future allows for students at the College to explore something new and unordinary, for the good and bad features, creating such a balance.