The unmistakable data about how mobile and tablets have become the place to be for online video continues, with release of Ooyala’s Q1 2014 Global Video Index, a usually useful barometer of all things Officially Happening.
But if you want to pull back from the coronation of the itty-bitty screens for just a moment, Ooyala says viewers who watch videos for 10 minutes or more “tended to be somewhat device agnostic, although the size and quality of the display likely figured into viewing choices.”
Nearly 80% of the time spent watching connected TVs—basically big TVs—was spent watching videos longer than 10 minutes. And 77% of the time watched on tablets was also for longer fare, like that. This report doesn’t say it, but the axiom that people will watch on the biggest screen they can find is supported by this new Ooyala data.
It’s not extremely clear cut. On mobile phones, 37% of the viewing time was for content that was six minutes long or less. But, surprise! Another 35% of viewing on mobile was of video a half hour long or more, leaving a gray area of mobile video viewing that is somewhere between brief and longish. (I’d say it seems like mobile viewers kind of split their viewing length just about in thirds, between short, long and Mr. In-Between.)
The long and short of it, though, is that mobile phone and tablet use for video is increasing at a dizzying rate. In the first quarter of 2012, Ooyala reported mobile and tablet video combined for 3.4% of total video viewing. A year later, that figure nearly tripled to 9.2 and this year, it’s up to a “whopping” 21.5%, which is a 532% climb since 2012, which is even beyond whopping and edging into “ridiculous” territory.
By 2017, Ooyala says (noting eMarketer research) there will be 2.75 billion cell phones, one for every three human beings on the planet. (And I’d bet not one-third of them will be principally used to actually talk to somebody.)
Where you are in the world figures into whether you’re using an iOS or Android mobile device, with implications for content makers and publishers.
In Latin America, in the first quarter, video views on Android phones outstripped iOS (53%-47%) but globally, iOS still rules, and particularly in the Asia/Pacific Rim where those devices carried 82% of the views.
In the good old USA, Android leads iOS in sales, 50%-40% but iOS leads in video views, 60%-40%.
That Android number is substantially higher in the U.S. than a year ago, and various nations have taken sides, one way or the other Crips/Bloods style. Usually, money talks, and Android smartphones are usually cheaper than Apple.
For video publishers with world domination in mind, it seems clearer than ever you’ve got to serve both operating systems.
Sort of separately, the Ooyala index has data that says watching live content has singular appeal, regardless of device. “When it comes to live video — whether live news and events or live linear programming — viewers tend to watch for longer periods of time at home on a connected TV than on any other device,” the report says.
“But across all device types, live video continues to engage viewers for longer periods of time compared to VOD,” it continues. This helps to explain the money behind the World Cup and March Madness games and why several online content makers are ramping up their concert schedules.