Commentary

The New OTT World: Consumers Sign Up For 10+ Services

How many OTT services should you have: one, two or three?

There is one veteran digital TV executive -- working now for a traditional TV network group -- who thinks consumers will soon want many more.

Like in the double digits. Yes, 10, 15 or more. Back up the truck!

Speaking with Ad Age, Marc DeBevoise, president-COO at CBS Interactive, said the average media consumer ownership of streaming services will expand a lot -- perhaps as high as “two dozen.”

This idea seems to go against the grain of TV consumers who are “cord-cutters” -- the ones who ran from traditional TV pay providers. Those services can deliver say 200 or so channels -- at around $100 to $120 a month. And it’s that price tag causing those exits.

But it may make sense when considering the rise of OTT/digital services -- especially when it comes to the perception of getting around three services for $50 to $70 a month.

The new TV bundle might include one niche TV-video service, another skinny pay TV bundle (for a 20 to 30 networks), as well as perhaps two or so on-demand services (Netflix, Amazon).

Maybe all this TV disruption isn’t about price after all. It’s about choice, even if it costs a collective $120 a month. At the same time, analysts also believe the ease of use -- fewer bills (or perhaps just one bill) -- is what TV consumers want.

This is where the newly formed Walt Disney streaming group of services comes in: Hulu, ESPN+, and Disney+. Bob Iger, chairman-CEO of Disney, proposed selling all three in a package, perhaps at a price discount.

Is it Disney’s intention for consumers to only buy its streaming platforms? Or that consumers might also buy a few others? Perhaps somewhere in between.

Compared with largely digital TV network and content platforms from NBCUniversal, WarnerMedia and Disney -- all this would seem to suggest that CBS -- and other midsize or more independent TV network groups -- are hoping OTT numbers per consumer will grow.

And 24 is a safe number to begin with.

2 comments about "The New OTT World: Consumers Sign Up For 10+ Services".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, May 24, 2019 at 12:22 p.m.

    Wayne, eventually we will see the same types of bundeling in SVOD that we have had with cable for decades. Also, many of the emerging SVOD options will go two ways---one for  ads at a lower sub price; the other without ads but you pay more---in both cases you will get basically the same content. So, in this context, it seems quite likely that the average SVOD consumer may subscribe to ten or more services out of the hundreds eagerly  contending for his/her business. As for those money saving "cord cutters", LOL guys and gals. You will wind up paying two or three times what you once paid for "pay TV" and in return you will receive mostly the same types of fare from the same program suppliers.

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited replied, May 24, 2019 at 2:27 p.m.

    Solving a problem with the same building materials that the problems caused causes the same problems or worse. You explain it better in the terms addressed here.

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