With the turn of the year and winter holidays behind, it’s time to focus on the months ahead and try to plan around the top video streaming industry trends that will dominate 2023.
2022 saw a further drop in the amount of time consumers spend daily on each streaming service as the number of platforms and content options continued to multiply. Meanwhile, a packed sporting events calendar offered the perfect opportunity for more and more sports fans to adopt online video as the preferred way of following their favorite competitions.
But what will happen in 2023? Here are the main video streaming trends that we think you should be watching out for.
1. Sports streaming adoption accelerates
Starting with the Beijing Winter Olympic Games and ending with the World Cap in Qatar, the super year for sports that 2022 was set the perfect stage for more and more consumers to turn to online video to follow sporting events.
Only during last year’s World Cup, a selection of NPAW clients registered a 264% increase in the average daily number of plays compared with the fifteen days before the start of the tournament, while daily playtime increased by 281%. These numbers confirm the tremendous engagement potential of sports content, and we can expect streaming services to double down their investments in the rights to sports competitions in an effort to bring in more viewers.
2. The industry shifts to advertising
In the current hyper-competitive and crowded streaming market, users are spending less time on each platform every day, and the vast services offer makes it harder for businesses to continue delivering strong user growth. This context is pushing even industry giants like Netflix to introduce advertising into their business model to lower the price of subscriptions and attract more users — a move that is already starting to pay off.
The industry’s shift to advertising will accelerate in the year ahead, with FAST channel revenue expected to triple by 2027. Hybrid models combining a premium ad-free tier and a cheaper or free ad-supported will become ever more ubiquitous as traditional SVoD services turn to ads to make the most of their content.
3. Multi-CDN emerges as a winning strategy
Streaming services must provide their users with a smooth and reliable viewing experience if they want to stay ahead of the competition and minimize user churn. Implementing a multi-CDN strategy is emerging as one of the best ways of doing so.
By having multiple CDNs at their disposal and switching between them to always select the right CDN according to business and audience needs, services can ensure a superior streaming experience while optimizing content delivery costs. Multi-CDN is one of the quickest and most efficient methods for boosting Quality of Experience and improving issues like latency or bitrate drops, and its adoption is expected to grow considerably in the months ago as more and more services become aware of this fact.
4. Deeper, more holistic analytics solutions
With ad-based models and ensuring a superior user experience becoming increasingly important, more complex and complete streaming analytics and intelligence tools will be needed, and consolidation of until now separate tools will be required.
Whereas many streaming companies still rely on a variety of analytics tools to monitor every element of their business, holistic analytics platforms integrating all measurement needs will become the industry standard. Cross-company access across departments to ad effectiveness, audience behavior, Quality of Experience, and content performance data will allow teams to work together more effectively, relying on a single set of data to define their business strategy and being able to compare apples to apples.