OTT customer frustration to drive change: Ooyala

Mobile video consumption up 25 per cent in 2017
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Viewer frustration at the proliferation of content on OTT platforms is likely to drive change this year according to Ooyala's State of the Broadcast Industry report for 2018.

The report says viewers feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of content available across OTT platforms.

Citing research by Hub Entertainment, the report says 49 per cent of those surveyed believe they have too many TV options. Ooyala suggests this means offering better user discovery, simple authentication, and personalized service is more important than ever. "Streaming services will need to stand apart from the competition and offer clear options for the overwhelmed," says the report.

The Ooyala report identifies several areas of focus by content distributors as they seek to attract and maintain share of view including:

- Format experimentation: Content delivery services are experimenting with formats, such as vertical video or mobile-specific content series, to optimise the TV anywhere viewing experience

- Social media: Major social-media platforms, including Facebook (with an estimated $1 billion content spend next year), Twitter and Snapchat – all grasping the growing role of video online – are jumping into the streaming pool with big investments in long- and short-form video

- Bundling: Skinny bundles are gaining traction, and distributors will end the year with more than three million US subscribers to mini-bundles, per comScore. Look for more bundling experiments in 2018

IP technology: Traditional television companies – broadcasters and cable programmers alike – are going all-in on IP technology, focusing on the related metadata which providers believe will drive critical advances in every area of video delivery. The next-generation broadcast TV standard, ATSC 3.0, is an example. This embrace of data will be crucial to TV industry success during the next five years;

Original ContentThough some viewers are saying “too much content”, creators are attracting viewers with a combination of originals and exclusives, the budgets for which will continue to soar. Consequently, distributors will have less patience for the time it has traditionally taken to build audiences and they may be quick to cancel shows – so look for shake-outs this year. Content creators will also pursue new revenue streams (subscription plus advertising, more merchandising of shows, etc.)

The report also predicts mobile viewing will continue to grow, accounting for 75 per cent of mobile data traffic by 2022. “TV viewing is continuing to go to a much more personalised, one-to-one experience,” said Belsasar Lepe, co-founder and SVP of products and solutions at Ooyala. “Where previously you might have sat with your family and consumed your favourite show together, it’s going to be online and much more personalised with additional features such as virtual and augmented reality.”

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