Forward-thinking Media brands have been investing in OTT services for over a decade. MLB.tv launched in the spring of 2003, offering a full season of streaming for $79.95 and signing up over 100,000 subscribers. The BBC’s iPlayer launched in December of 2007 and since then has seen over 14 billion requests for TV and radio programs.
More recently, the OTT universe has been expanding at a dramatic rate. Parks Associates tracked 25 OTT service launches in 2015 alone. In addition to major launches like HBO Now, SlingTV and Go90, niche services like VidAngel (family-friendly versions of movies and TV) and XiveTV (high-quality documentaries) and Brightcove customer CatchPlay (a Taiwan-based distributor of independent films) leveraged clever programming strategies to gain beachheads in OTT. The opportunity for media brands to connect directly to audiences is being realized.
Brightcove has been helping media companies launch OTT services for several years. During that time we have seen companies employing two broad strategies:
Launch with a highly custom, highly differentiated product
This approach seeks to win by offering a meaningful contrast to competitive services that exist. This level of differentiation comes with a price-tag in terms of $s and time. As such, this strategy is more usually adopted by Tier 1 broadcasters and operators or brands with deep pockets, a large and loyal customer base and lots of brand equity.
This strategy also carries significant ongoing operational overhead. One of the many comments we heard from media brands when we discussed their existing OTT services was along the lines of; ‘we launched our XXX app YYY months ago, but haven’t been able to find the time / money to update it since then’.
Get to market as quickly as possible with only minor differentiation of the end user experience
This strategy focuses on competing on content, pricing and marketing while minimizing costs of launching and operating the service on an ongoing basis.
Often, however, the underlying technologies used to implement this strategy limit the adaptability and evolution of the service over time. We’ve heard frustration from companies who were able to get an OTT service up and running quickly and at a low price point, but are now locked into a very prescriptive set of existing functionalities with little or no opportunity to enhance or improve their existing service.
This latter approach - which we’ve labelled the ’Turnkey Strategy’ - is a better fit for the majority of companies looking to exploit consumer demand for OTT services and we see an opportunity to provide a superior technology solution in support of it.
Introducing Brightcove OTT Flow - powered by Accedo
To that end, we are excited to announce that Brightcove has partnered with Accedo to launch a new OTT product: Brightcove OTT Flow - powered by Accedo. The Brightcove/Accedo partnership brings over 15 years of expertise in video management, distribution and monetization and multi-platform application design and development. The OTT Flow solution will enable media organizations to deploy high-quality premium video services across multiple platforms in a matter of weeks not months.
Technically, the solution leverages Brightcove Video Cloud and Brightcove Once for content ingestion, metadata management, analytics and server side ad insertion, Accedo App Grid for OTT application creation, ongoing editorial and submission, Accedo middleware to merge data from Accedo App Grid and Video Cloud, and Brightcove device SDKs and players in the actual OTT applications.
As a completely cloud-based solution, OTT Flow will be upgraded regularly and updates will automatically become available to customers without requiring redevelopment and resubmission. Changes to generated apps can be made and published in realtime.
At launch, OTT Flow will support multiple business models (AVOD & SVOD), multiple platforms; desktop, mobile web, iOS smartphone & tablet, Android smartphone & tablet, Apple TV & Google Cast. Additional platform support for Android TV, Fire TV, and Roku will follow shortly thereafter.
We are thrilled to be able to provide this new solution to media and content companies that removes the friction from OTT development to help them get to market faster, unlock new revenue streams and capitalize on the OTT market opportunity.
Get started with OTT Flow