S01E10: Game of Streams (Streaming is coming)

Our Media Solution Consultant, Magnus Svensson, is sharing his reflections from the online streaming industry in this post. This is part of a monthly series so make sure to follow us here if you don’t want to miss an episode.

Ericsson presented their TV and Media Consumer report this month. The trend is clear, streaming video is coming and more and more people watch content using their mobile. Around 70 percent of consumers watch TV and video on a smartphone today, twice as many as in 2012. The prediction is also that by 2020, half of all viewing will be done on a mobile screen, an 85 percent increase since 2010.

This will put demands on the content providers, streaming platforms, and distribution networks. The content needs to be easy to consume on a mobile device. I believe a lot in short format video, news or series, that are suitable to watch while commuting. Personalized news that is adapted to your commuting time, or high-quality series where each episode is around 10–15 minutes long.

The Norwegian success “Skam” is a good example of content adapted to mobile viewing and Facebook just announced that it will make an English-language adaptation on Facebook Watch.

High-Quality Video at scale

But it’s not all mobile. According to Nielsen U.S. TV consumers are spending an average of 13 hours monthly viewing SVOD streaming content and 89.5% of that time is spent viewing on the TV screen. According to Ericsson TV and Media Consumer Report 4K/UHD TVs are now present in over 20% of all homes.

But is online video ready to replace traditional video distribution? I would say that we’re getting closer but not really there yet. The streaming solutions are not yet as stable and scalable as needed and the internet can’t handle the capacity that is needed to stream high-quality video to all homes. According to Nielsen for every hour of online viewing, the average consumer also views 5 hours of broadcast television.

At the same time as internet capacity is increasing and video codecs get better, we require more and more data to be sent. 4K/HDR, higher framerate, lower latency and personalized streams increase the network load.

The subscribers demand high quality for the streaming services. Streaming video is no longer a complement to the traditional distribution, it will become the main distribution method. Content providers, broadcasters, and distributors need to work with stability, scalability and content distribution. This includes, but not limited to, scalable origin solutions, efficient multi-CDN and continued work on efficient encoding.

Movies Anywhere

Disney has been joined by four other major studios, Fox, Sony, Universal and Warner Bros, in launching the Movies Anywhere service in the U.S. (unfortunately only available to residents of the U.S.). Films produced by those studios will appear in the Movies Anywhere app, as well as in each of the services where you have connected your accounts.

It works on Amazon Video, Google Play, Apple iTunes and Vudu. At launch, the Movies Anywhere library features more than 7,300 digital movie titles, along with previews and film extras from the studios.

This is almost too good to be true, and I can’t really figure out the revenue share between the different companies. But for a consumer, this is a very nice service and I can’t wait until we get this in Sweden.

To watch out for the coming months…

Formula 1 plans to launch an online live streaming service for fans in 2018. Live stream offerings will only be made available in markets where it does not clash with existing television deals that have guaranteed exclusivity. This is just yet another content owner that plans for their own content delivery directly to consumers.

More and more rumors state that Amazon will launch in Sweden. Now it’s just a matter of when, not if, Amazon will open Amazon in Sweden. Still to be seen, but this will most likely also increase the Amazon Prime Video presence in Sweden. If Amazon does what they do it in over 200 countries, where all Amazon Prime subscriber (the member club with free shipping) automatically are an Amazon Prime Video subscriber, you will see a huge lift for their video service also in Sweden.

I have stated this before, be aware of Amazon for the future…

Streaming Tech Sweden 2107 will be held 22nd of November. The agenda and speaker lineup are now finalized. We are proud to present a packed program, where we will cover the most relevant topics in the streaming tech community: low-latency streaming, server-side ad insertion, the video codec situation and VR.

Secure your early bird ticket at: https://www.streamingtech.se

Magnus Svensson is a Media Solution Consultant and partner at Eyevinn Technology. A Swedish consultancy company specialized in streaming, VR, and gaming.

Follow me on Twitter (@svensson00) for regular updates and news.

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