Streaming services are growing, but we asked the experts what lies ahead and why. See their predictions on the 2022 live & OTT streaming trends.
What will the world of live and over the top streaming services look like in the coming years? Given the rise of new entertainment technology, as well as changes in customer behavior and media consumption, we’re up for quite a journey.
We’ve asked tech experts and streaming enthusiasts to share their predictions of live and OTT trends. Here’s what they’ve shared:
11 trends set to dominate in live & OTT streaming services
One OTT streaming services trend I anticipate to dominate this year and further is more week-to-week episode releases. We all know how Netflix was among the first streaming services to release all TV shows episodes in one go for viewers to binge-watch. Although the streaming giant will stick with this method in the future, it’s also experimenting with release schedules for some programs, such as The Great British Baking Show.
Netflix’s competitors are also now venturing into the once-a-week territory, as we have seen with Disney+ releasing episodes of shows like The Mandalorian on a weekly schedule. Keeping this in mind, I expect other streaming services like Apple TV+ and HBO Max to focus more on week-to-week episode releases. This ensures that each episode becomes a topic of discussion during the week it is released.
The video streaming ecosystem has exploded in recent years. There is now a plethora of services and OTT streaming platforms from which to choose, and most of them opted for a subscription-based model as the easiest go-to-market strategy. As a result, consumers are beginning to experience subscription fatigue — Deloitte predicts 150 million subscription cancellations in 2022.
In parallel, long-established players are reaching peak user levels as they consolidate their market share and lose viewers to the competition. Netflix just added the lowest number of subscribers since 2015 and is hiking prices to safeguard revenue growth. And it’s not the only one.
Content providers are exploring new ways of monetizing their content, and streaming advertising seems to hold the key. The industry is turning toward advertising-based video on-demand (AVOD) models, and free ad-supported streaming TV services (FAST channels) keep popping up. Global AVOD revenue alone is expected to grow by 144% between 2020 and 2026 while tripling in the US during the same period.
In 2022, e-commerce live streaming is projected to be a key trend. It has already taken off in China, but several platforms are looking to expand their products around the world, especially in the US. Social commerce is a $51.2 billion industry in the US that focuses on selling products on social media. Once live broadcasting on sites like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter can be integrated with commerce in 2022, a new era of in-stream shopping will begin.
Live internet shopping has already had an impact on consumers' shopping patterns. Brands and social media influencers are increasingly engaging in one-on-one engagements. As a result, Facebook and Instagram are adding more built-in purchasing options for live shopping to make it even easier for consumers to make purchases while they are on the site.
This trend can be particularly observed in the rebooting of most 1980s and 1990s series or movies. Movies like Karate Kid were rebooted into a TV series by YouTube Premium.
Another example is the reboot of Veronica Mars. I, for one, have adored this show and have already seen it twice and continue to watch some episodes here and there, whenever nostalgia kicks in hard. This series had a few reboots (or, more aptly, extensions to the story live) in the forms of movies, which picked up where the last episode of the last season left off.
Short form video content is here to stay (and grow)
Sammy Shayne, Chief Executive Officer and Owner of Couch Fame
We’re already seeing a ton of TikTok competitors, and that will only continue and grow. I’m unsure how successful they’ll be, but short-form video is here to stay.
With TikTok being the biggest website on the planet (at least, according to Cloud Flare), competition will be more and more ferocious. We saw something similar with tiny app-based Twitch competitors, many of which have developed into high-grossing global enterprises that we serve now as clients. So, I fully expect to see the same course of events in terms of TikTok competitors. Just think of it – even the app that is ten places behind TikTok in the number of users, that’s a $100 million per year enterprise, at a minimum. So, it’s a very tasty target and we’re excited to see that segment grow like live streaming has.
Live collaborations with influencers to increase brand awareness
For several years, brands have recognized the value of influencer marketing on social media. However, as live shopping grows in popularity and interest in live streaming grows in general, businesses should also consider live video collaborations with influencers.
In 2022, deeper connections with influencers will increase brand exposure on social media. Live video content such as tutorials, product demonstrations, interviews, BTS footage, and unboxing is popular with influencers and relatively easy to create. As influencer marketing evolves, both businesses and their ambassadors seek to deepen their engagement with their audiences, and live streaming is an obvious option.
A man bets on his smartphone while also reading real-time sports statistics. Analysts have long seen sports broadcasts as conventional television's saving grace, with NFL games accounting for seven of the top ten aired events in 2020. Despite this, networks such as Disney and NBC have increased their partnerships with the NFL to stream games on their own OTT streaming platforms (Disney+ and Peacock, respectively). And, to watch Thursday Night Football, today's fans must have an Amazon Prime subscription.
Unfortunately, sports betting apps like FanDuel and BetMGM have seen explosive development in the United States due to recent regulations. Similarly, the COVID-19 pandemic hasboosted Europe's online sports betting business.Today, it's difficult to watch an NFL game without being assaulted with advertisements for these sportsbooks. Signage promoting them adorns the walls of arenas and stadiums. But, as if that wasn't proof enough that major sports leagues are cozying up to sports betting, these ties are now influencing everything from adding new clubs to the number of regular-season games.
The pandemic has produced a new cohort of tech-savvy "silver streamers," who now account for roughly 10% of all streamers, despite the fact that millennials remain the largest consumer and streamer demographic in the world today. People over the age of 65 in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Japan are more excited than previously thought about streaming. That being said, live and OTT streaming platforms should be designed to cater to these new audiences – i.e., be created with accessibility as a top consideration.
Streaming live music shows will continue to grow in popularity
While initially music concerts were forced to be moved online by the COVID-19 pandemic, we can expect this trend to continue in 2022 and beyond. We can anticipate that, with the evolution of new technology, fans will be able to get closer to their favorite musicians as well as listen to superb quality music broadcasts.
One of the reasons why I believe live music concerts are here to stay is a recent action taken by Twitch, the live streaming powerhouse. They have created a new category for music channels in response to the growing demand for music live streams. And so, streaming live shows in 2022 should be a priority for musicians and others in the music industry.
We now have more data than ever. But without analysis and action, it's just digital clutter. Data automation will differentiate industry leaders from the pack in the next few years and create new capabilities. The live streaming and over the top streaming scene will be no different. Digital video supply chain data can improve quality of experience (QoE), content classification, ad targeting, and more.
It starts with a proactive, analytical approach to the existing digital data. Interoperability across vendors is a must. Most streaming ecosystems are made up of different technologies and providers, making root cause analysis challenging. End-to-end visibility necessitates integration of encoder, CDN, and player. Similarly,offering targeted advertising in a dynamic manner requires smooth process communication. Thus, with the rising awareness and need for first-party data, we can expect live and OTT streaming services to provide more actionable user insights.
One of the most prevalent OTT trends that we will see in 2022 and beyond is the introduction of VR and Metaverse. I believe the accessibility of immersive streaming technology is going to dominate this year in the OTT streaming services world. It is the latest over the top trend that has every content creator and streamer bouncing off walls. This is all possible because of the 5G bandwidth that has allowed streamers to choose 4K and VR streaming.
This captivating experience is a total game-changer for gaming enthusiasts all over the world. Facebook also recently launched Oculus, which is a collaborative VR platform for gamers to play video games. This is one reason for the rising popularity among consumers.
Also, the VR hardware prices have dropped from $2,000 to almost $299, which is another incentive for streamers to adopt this trend in the coming year.
As we’ve seen above, some of the top live and OTT trends we are likely to see in the coming years include:
The introduction of VR and Metaverse
The growth of short-form video content, as seen on Tiktok
In-stream shopping and many others.
If you’re planning to launch your own OTT streaming service, then it’s worth taking them into account. Whether they turn out to be true, only time will tell!