Guest post by Kirill Filippov, Chief Executive Officer, SPB TV
The growth of the global mobile and OTT TV market reveals nuances and problems previously unexpected but which determine future research paths. Universality is the best word to define this new trend: bringing together different viewing methods into hybrid TV models or mobile and OTT service developments.
Companies that are able to offer the highest usability always have an advantage in the eyes of users and B2B partners. However, usability is not only a commodity of app functions, but – first and foremost – an effective technological solution. In video broadcasting, a steady video stream is a vital factor in achieving success.
Expectations vis-a-vis LTE provide a good example. According to Mоbidia Technology, from 17 percent to 19 percent of mobile video consumers in advanced markets such as the USA and Canada have difficulties with 4G watching and prefer Wi-Fi connections. In new emerging markets this figure will be much more important – at the very least because of the fact that LTE is not yet widely used there. But this can be viewed as an advantage for companies able to work with different kinds of networks. The earlier you become a player in a developing market, the stronger your position will be in the future – it’s a basic truth.
Ericsson Mobility recently presented the top 5 countries in terms of net additions in 2013: China (+30 million), India (+10 million), Bangladesh (+6 million), Indonesia (+5 million), Egypt (+4 million). This shows that emerging markets are demonstrating the biggest growth.
Singapore is also regarded as an emerging market by The Economist. And the country has also achieved fantastic figures. According to the same source, smartphone and tablet penetration in Singapore is one of the highest in the world – 86 percent and 53 percent respectively. Compare it with Germany – 55 percent and 21 percent for May-July 2013. One more curious statistic: 17 percent of smartphone owners in Singapore say that they don’t use their smartphones to connect to the Internet… compared with 29 percent in Germany.
A stable bit rate is what users need and this is still not guaranteed in many networks. Developers of broadcasting solutions have to solve this problem. It would be appropriate to mention here that SPB TV solutions are among the leading worldwide OTT and mobile TV provides. SPB TV solutions are fine-tuned for all existing OS systems (Android, iOS, Symbian, BlackBerry, Windows Phone and many others), work with any network capacity, and, thanks to that, they are usable in different conditions with satisfactory commercial results.
But the instability of networks is not only a problem of developing markets. Another common tendency is the lack of financial resources for investments. Once again experience proves that the way out of this vicious circle is straightforward. And once again a universal solution – that’s what is needed: if you can apply your technology in different conditions without great investments, or, you can invest in your technology for the sake of your future profit. Content and subscriber bases are all that is needed from local partners.
Before concluding let’s talk about monetisation. Sharing schemes seems to be an efficient instrument for both sides. The content and network owners aren’t stuck with the problem of heavy financing and both partners have a good motivation to develop their common business.
Ericsson Mobility forecasts that 85 percent of North American mobile subscriptions will be LTE by 2019, and 80 percent of Middle East and Africa (3G/4G), while still being on 2G in 2013. It’s time for action!