Companies like Disney have expanded from TV to an online streaming service, and many more will follow due to the success of Netflix. But at what cost?
Between consumers and companies, it is hard to be sure who is more confused. We have cable TV, pay-per-view, Youtube and now multiple streaming services. The entire video content market has become widely saturated, and to fair, everyone needs to make money. Between the tug-of-war for content between geographical rights, online and cable, what is the real impact streaming services have had on content producers and TV channels worldwide?
We feel the one-party ignored continuously in this new era of streaming services are the consumers. Firstly, it used to be very simple, flick a channel to the next until you find a show you want to watch. Pushing forward, video on demand made it more convenient for consumers to watch their favourite shows at a time more comfortable, but at the expense of advertisements which we easily skip over. Fast forward to when Netflix broke the wheel and revolutionized TV as we know it. Hulu came out around the same time as Netflix and is still going strong today, but the model of Hulu is more catered towards advertisers, forcing people to watch advertisements they do not want to. While Hulu did command more fresh content, there was something about Netflix's lack of advertisement that made consumers not mind subscribing at all, even if they hardly use Netflix.
Netflix is a streaming service that acts like your very own movie and TV shows on a server you can access easily from anywhere on the planet. Today, Netflix's user interface is still the best among all of the streaming services, and the algorithms they use to figure out what users want to watch next is unmatched. Altogether, this makes Netflix a robust platform which claimed market-share at an alarming rate. To add salt to the wound, Netflix started churning out fantastic original content. There were many attempts by companies trying to copy the model and take away a piece of the pie from Netflix, but the lack of branding eventually lead to their downfall.
In comes, Amazon prime video, signing up the newly ejected Jeremy Clarkson from the most popular TV show on the planet, and he brought along with him a loyal following which signed on to Amazon's new streaming service. As far as strategy goes, the planning and execution were perfect, which lead to Amazon prime to becoming the second official household streaming service. Netflix and Amazon have cemented their spot, and we do not see them going anywhere for the next decade at least. Even TV manufacturers have included 'Netflix' and 'Prime Video' buttons on their remote control if that's not evidenced enough.
Hulu is still a reasonably successful business and model in the United States, but it is challenging for them to move outside of the region at the moment. Scalability is the real strength of Netflix; it does not have to worry about Ads nor hire a large sales team to manage it. The latest addition to the streaming services list is Disney Plus, Disney already controls a tremendous amount of rights to its content; it was not difficult for them to make the switch. But as a result, Disney contents were pulled from Netflix, much to the dismay of loyal Netflix customers. It is Disney's right since the material is their own, so when the contract with Netflix was up, it made sense to make these content exclusive to Disney Plus to secure more customers.
We must credit Netflix with the drop in online video piracy, with more enforcement actions taken for copyright infringement, people saw no reason to pay a few dollars a month and enjoy what seems to be unlimited content legally. But what is to stop from Pixar, Universal and Fox from doing the same thing Disney has done? Pulling away these content will not affect the pool of Netflix customers; we don't think. But for those who were quickly able to find such titles on Netflix, Piracy might present the best solution for any content outside of Netflix.
People do not respond well to being taken advantage of; most are not going to take too kindly paying a subscription to every content distributor on the planet for rights to view. Apple is already having a tough time getting people to go along with their pay-per-view movie streaming model. Another thing to point out is how inflated production budgets have become, with most of the budget spent on actors. Maybe the time has come to revisit such concepts, Game of Thrones, for example, was a hit TV show that did away with big names on their talent list. Only the future can tell the trajectory which these streaming services will evolve. Cable TV as we traditionally know it will do down the same path as the radio, still there but not quite.
Thank you for reading 'More streaming services could mean more Piracy' by IT Block. IT Block is an IT service provider based in Singapore and a registered Google News source. #TV #streaming #video #prime #amazon #netflix #hulu #hbo #iT #support #services #Singapore