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OTT in Latin America: Differentiation Is the Main Challenge

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One panel at the recent Streaming Media East conference in New York City described the streaming market for all points south. While conference attendees were largely familiar with the streaming market in the U.S. and Canada, session moderator Steve Symonds, managing director and partner at Symonds Associates, let them know that much is different in Latin American countries.

"You're not in Kansas anymore, when you're in Latin America," said Symonds. "It's a very, very different environment. Quality of service and network speeds vary wildly from country to country, and within countries. You have a market where $9 or $10 a month is a big deal, not like here in the United States. Low credit card penetration, particularly of your target market which are the younger folks. Billing collection is one of the most difficult challenges. Piracy -- oh, my god -- there's so much piracy going on it's amazing. There are no net neutrality rules. There are many competitive offers. We have some of those folks up here today."

Why is there so much competition in Latin America if price is a problem for customers?

"Basically, if you are a network operator in Latin America, you are going to launch over-the-top," explained Symonds. "You're going to launch over-the-top because all of your competitors are coming after you in your home market."

The challenge facing operators, then, is how to differentiate their offerings. They can do so through content, number of titles, usage rules, pricing, or bundling, Symonds said.

To view the entire session, watch the video below.

Finding and Converting OTT Subscribers in Latin America

Over-the-top video has launched in several Latin American countries (with at least a dozen countries poised to follow), offered by no less than six digital media operators. None of the OTT operators will have exclusive major studio content, and few will have unique indigenous content. What strategies and tactics will these operators deploy to win the battle for subscribers with a service that, by definition, cannot guarantee QoS in terms of price, size of the library, and content portability across platforms? What are the major barriers to finding prospects and converting them to subscribers? Which operators have the best chance at dominating the market for digital media distribution in Latin America.

Moderator: Steve Symonds, Managing Director & Partner, Symonds Associates
Speaker: Rodrigo Terrazas, CEO, Bazuca
Speaker: Antonio Barreto, CEO, DLA
Speaker: Gonzalo de la Vega, Director, Business Development, Global Delivery Services, Telefonica
Speaker: Bob Delamar, GM, Total Movie

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