Things might start to get very interesting with Google's 1 Gbps network, which was supposed to be just a test network to create an Internet based innovation hub in the towns it was in. But if you're going to offer such a capable network, why stop there and not offer TV service, as well? And that seems exactly what Google is thinking, too.
This would help Google break the monopolies that ISP's/cable providers have in the country, while leapfrogging them in the service being offered. The others aren't even close to offering a 1 Gbps network, and even if they do, theirs prices would be way higher than what Google is planning to offer.
But how does owning the infrastructure help them? Google wants to not have to depend on others for offering a quality distribution of their services. They want to enter this market not only to depend less on them, but also to fire up competition and get them to offer quality services, too, not unlike how they did with Chrome, where they made their own browser, which was and still is the fastest, and then everyone else had to catch up, too.
Offering a paid TV service means they can take advantage of Motorola's cable box business, too, and also of their own Google TV software. This integration has another type of positive side effect. It means that if they are serious about this, and they seem to be, the TV networks will be interested in supporting the Google TV, because they want to be on Google's cable network, too. So no more of Google begging them to come to Google TV, now it's the TV networks who will die to get on Google's cable network and the Google TV software.
Google has already started discussions with The Walt Disney Co., Time Warner Inc., and Discovery Communications Inc., and we'll probably see more of them signing up, soon. The TV industry is ripe of disruption, and it's very hard for an outsider to get in. Apple tried for years, and still can't. It's very possible that Google could finally be the one to disrupt them, and increase competition, service quality and lower prices.