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The OTT Video Services is hot.  Right now, Hulu is nearing 12 million paid subscribers; Netflix has in excess of 75 million subscribers, and is available in almost 200 countries worldwide; and Amazon has almost 50 million Prime members, all of which have access to original and licensed video on-demand (VOD) OTT content as part of  their memberships.

And, beyond the “big 3” of OTT, there are hundreds of OTT providers, catering to various niches. Whether building a base of OTT subscribers around user-generated content (UGC), linear channel OTT as part of the “TV Everywhere” initiatives, or even live event OTT pay-per-view or event models, OTT providers serve the needs of viewers across the content spectrum.

Understanding that the agility of OTT providers to simultaneously look backward to gather best practices while also looking toward the future is what will enable their accelerated market growth, Unisphere Research and Streaming Media magazine have published a new survey report, titled “The OTT-Video Services Market—Today’s Trends and What is Next for 4K, HDR, HFR & VR.” Helping to assess the potential of OTT, the research, which was sponsored by Level 3 Communications, and crafted by Transitions, Inc., represents the views of 628 respondents who either consume or create OTT content and services.

Streaming Media magazine and Unisphere Research, along with key sponsor and research partner Akamai, set about to gauge the State of CDN Services. We asked survey respondents to provide details of both their viewing habits as well as their assessment of CDN services, both in terms of expected terabytes served and CDN features. 

Our research centered on industry experts, media engineers and executive management, so we asked questions that provided insight into both the actual and intended uses of CDN services.  We found three primary results: Our survey takers tend to be fragmented when it comes to primary media consumption devices, tend to work for companies that either deliver less than 1TB or more than 100TB of online content per month, and are almost equally concerned with pricing in CDN service models as with the need to maintain multi-screen delivery to existing and emerging media consumption devices.

Some key results of the study include:

  • Laptops are still the most dominant form-factor for primary online media consumption, and the combination of desktops and laptops still make up 46% of primary media consumption for our survey takers. Tablets (19%) barely eke out third place against the oldest media consumption device on the list: television ($18%).
  • A full 92% of respondents said that content quality is important or very important to their overall online viewing experience.
  • Multi-screen/multi-device delivery is far and away the number-one functionality that survey respondents look to their CDN provider to deliver on. 

Click to view complete infographicOTT video is maturing towards a pay environment, with sustainable business models. Premium content delivery is becoming a more significant component of the overall online video business, thereby transitioning OTT delivery towards a pay-TV model. Obtaining broad content rights to stream video to multiple screens is felt to be a significant business growth obstacle.

These are some of the findings of a new survey of media industry executives, which sought to uncover their views on the current and future state of OTT video from inside the trenches.

Download the complete report to get more insights and analysis on this growing business segment, plus the Executive Summary by Dan Rayburn of