Parks Associates: Live TV Healthy, Just Shifting to Connected Devices


Parks Associates has identified five key video trends that have emerged in today’s shifting media landscape, where “internet-based live content is experiencing a renaissance.”

The new whitepaper—Top 5 Video Trends in an IP-based World, sponsored by Ooyala—asserts that live TV is not dying; it is shifting to connected devices. The rise of platforms like Periscope, Facebook Live and other live streaming apps has raised consumer awareness of and appetite for live content on connected devices. Several companies have joined DISH Network, AT&T, Sky and Sony in offering online pay-TV services. Parks Associates believes that this shift in consumption to online sources for live content will continue into the future. “Live programming can be extremely valuable to producers, distributors and consumers, driving uniquely high volumes of use,” the report states. “As consumers become accustomed to accessing live content anywhere, the volume of consumption for high-profile live events will reach well beyond the audience sizes that are achieved today.”

Another key trend is that users expect opportunities to interact with their content. The younger generation has become accustomed to a digital world that is “clickable”—responsive to input and loaded with opportunities for participation and immersion. The issue is that this level of interaction requires a lot of flexibility, responsiveness and control for the user-directed features. Parks Associates points out that “dynamic, two-way interactivity among audiences and producers will provide deep immersion for the viewer and new monetization opportunities for video services.”

The whitepaper also concludes that global, IP-based video services will be the next big revenue pool for content makers. As OTT video services such as Netflix, Crunchyroll and CuriosityStream have expanded their footprints worldwide, traditional content producers are following suit. There are many challenges, though, beyond just achieving global scale, including technical delivery, rights management and legal restrictions. Nevertheless, “a global marketplace allows content producers to achieve greater volumes of viewers by aggregating interested audiences across global markets. Even niche segments can gain notable scale on a global basis. This aggregation provides a greater base over which producers can spread development costs and derive revenues.”

Parks Associates reports that in the future, consumers will demand new, diverse types of content. Producers and distributors are already experimenting with content length, vertical screen formats and monetization models to take advantage of growing smartphone video consumption. The firm points out that with the broad experimentation going on in content production, “no company has become the clear innovation leader in these new format areas. Thus, any company with vision and capability could emerge as a leader in defining the future of the medium.”

AI is another emerging trend that may impact the video space going forward. “Artificial intelligence will ultimately be a key to unlock the next stage in the evolution of the personalized user experience and in decision-making for content producers,” the report states. “The new capabilities available via AI will allow enhanced monetization and a differentiated user experience, making today’s services seem static by comparison.”