Did you know that almost 69% of households in the US subscribed to some of the other streaming services in 2018? This will not come as a surprise when you learn about the prediction that almost 55 million people in the US will refrain from watching traditional pay-tv by 2022.
The OTT industry is growing at a phenomenal pace. Realizing this upward trend, many content creators and broadcasters are trying to make the most of it.
Launching your own OTT app seems like the best step in the contemporary scenario. However, there are plenty of considerations before you jump into OTT development and create your app. It can be quite overwhelming to comprehend all of this in one go but you must conclude only after thinking it through.
It will help to provide a clear resolution on how to create an OTT app. Let’s delve deeper into what all you should factor in before you put out your content in front of the target audience.
Device Used by Your Target Audience to Stream Content
Before you jump into how to make an OTT app, you should have a deep understanding of the audience you want to target. This includes knowing which device your audience streams on. Broadly, there are two categories in which your target audience can fall.
- Mobile apps
As per a popular 2019 research report, it was found that almost 75% of the streaming activity takes place on mobiles and Smartphone’s. Mobile devices have 89% reach across US households that have WIFI. This is quite higher than the same stats for TV apps that stand at 54%. Creating a mobile app is a safer option for a large majority of content creators.
- TV apps
You will be amazed to know that as high as 82% of US households will have internet-connected TVs by 2023. TV apps have a comparatively lower penetration but they are the fastest-growing segment when measured using the year-on-year method. Globally, over 58% of the streaming audience uses OTT TV applications to view content online.
Most Popular TV Apps to Consider
Now that we have learned about the two broad categories of applications you should factor in, let’s explore some of the most popular TV apps and their interesting statistics.
A staggering 58.7 billion hours of content was streamed using Roku in the year 2020. This is a huge growth when you compare it with the 2019 or 2018 stats that stands at 40.3 billion hours and 24 billion hours respectively. As per 2019 data reports, an average Roku user spent over 3.5 hours daily watching their preferred content. This gives you a fair idea as to how the Roku app/TVs dominate the streaming device market.
- Amazon Fire TV
Amazon Fire TV allows one to stream high-quality content in HDR, 4K, UHD compatibility with any supporting device. As per 2020 data reports, the Amazon Fire TV platform has over 40 million active monthly viewers. This is also greater than its fierce competitor Roku. Earlier in 2019, it reported a monthly active user base of around 34 million users.
- Android TV
Android TVs and related applications have grown popular due to the high level of convenience it brings to the users. Android TVs are not just easy to operate but also allow you to sync with other Android devices seamlessly. The monthly active user base for Android TVs has grown more than 80% in 2020 when compared with last year’s data. Also, there are over 7000 apps on Google Play for Android TVs.
- Apple TV
Apple TV is an amalgamation of a digital media player and a streaming box. When it comes to the smart TV segment, Apple does not dominate the market in the US & Europe. It lags behind the leading players like Amazon and Roku that are way ahead in the game. As per 2020 data reports, Apple TV had over 28.3 million active users in the US. Apple’s premium pricing has refrained it from gaining a higher market share but it is heavily inclined on original content and is set to make new changes in the latest version of Apple TV.
Chromecast has been developed by Google and it is a special type of media player that can amplify the user experience for online streaming content. Its advanced built-in technology allows one to stream content using their phone or other internet-powered devices on a big screen. Chromecast is still in the nascent stage and has a market share of 3.1% (2020) globally in the smart TV streaming device segment.
- Gaming consoles
Gaming consoles are electronic/computer devices that are used to play virtual games on a digital screen. Some have built-in screens whereas others are connected to a TV to play games. Some of the most popular gaming consoles include Sony’s PlayStation 4, Microsoft’s Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, etc. Sony’s PlayStation 4 leads the market with more than 18.3 million units, as per 2019 data reports.
Decision-making Parameters for OTT App Development
Choosing the right device/platform is highly subjective and depends on two important factors, your target audience, and the target geographical location. TV is considered a more comfortable way to stream content online. It is suitable if you want to create OTT apps that focus on entertainment or home yoga/fitness-related content.
Realizing the fast-growing trend of mobile apps, top OTT platforms in the world like Netflix launched a low-cost subscription model for smartphones to entertain a wider audience base in countries like India and Malaysia. Let’s explore three important parameters that you should consider before making your final decision.
- Know your user’s location
The first and most important consideration before you start your OTT application development process is to figure out your target user’s location. This is an important parameter for creating an OTT app as users across different countries have different preferences. For example, in the US, iOS dominates the market with a share of 58%, which is higher than Android’s market share that stands at 41% only. However, in the Asian region, Android is the leading player with a market share of 83% much more than iOS at 16.35%.
- Market share of each device
The second important parameter that you should use to decide on a specific type of OTT app is the market share of each device. You should know that Roku’s smart TV is used by over 29.1 million users. The same stats for Amazon Fire TV which leads the market, stands at 34 million users. Apple TV has a user base of around 21.3 million. This should give you a fair idea as to how you should go about your OTT platform app development.
- Are you targeting multiple geographies?
If your answer to the above question is a yes, then you should dig deeper into the global statistics for the online video streaming industry. If you are targeting a global audience, you should try to create both iOS and Android OTT streaming apps. However, if you are limited to Europe and the US, you should start to build OTT apps for iOS. Android dominates the Asian market and if you are targeting this segment along with the US, you should start with Android apps as it has a much higher market share in Asia which will increase your viewership.
These were some of the most important considerations that you should be mindful of before entering the OTT space. You should be well aware of your target audience’s location, device preference, content consumption pattern, etc. for a successful OTT platform development in the contemporary. The best OTT app platform solution providers will help you develop OTT apps that are feature-packed and will keep your users glued to the screen!
Dwarakesh is Video Monetization & OTT Platform Expert at CONTUS VPlayed. Interested in digging deep into video/audio streaming media tools and Love to blog, discuss and share views on the latest technologies tips, and tricks. He’s also passionate about photography loves to capture the pure essence of life.