Yesterday, Nielsen released its Q1 ’19 Total Audience Report, which among other things showed that connected TV consumption continues to dominate mobile video. For adults 18+ Nielsen found connected TV usage was 54 minutes per day (up from 46 minutes per day in Q1 ’18), while usage of video focused apps on smartphones increased to 13 minutes per day (up from 10 minutes per day in Q1 ’18). Tablet video remained even smaller at 7 minutes per day, up from 5 minutes per day in Q1 ’18 (see image below).
I’m pleased to present the 473rd edition of the VideoNuze podcast, with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
Connected TV is one of the hottest trends in the video industry today. So is mobile video, and with 5G rolling out and mobile-first services like Quibi launching, mobile is going to get even more attention.
But there is some conflicting data which Colin and I discuss this week. For example, a report from Extreme Reach this week showed that CTVs’ share of video ad impressions has grown to 49%, partly at mobile’s expense, and that 30-second ads which are CTV-friendly, now account for 69% of video ad impressions. Yet Colin shares Pew data that at least 17% of smartphone users now don’t even have a wired broadband connection, which likely means CTV isn’t meaningful to them. How can CTV and mobile coexist and how should content providers be thinking about these trends?
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (21 minutes, 32 seconds)
I’m pleased to present the 472nd edition of the VideoNuze podcast, with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
Quibi is making a big bet that viewers are ready to subscribe to a premium mobile video service. This week Colin and I discuss where Quibi might fit into the increasingly competitive video landscape. A critical variable is how viewers’ expectations are going to shift when the ad-free, content-rich Disney+ service costing just $7 per month launches later this year. Colin and I agree that if Quibi charges $8 per month as reported, and doesn’t offer a solid tier as a freemium on-ramp, building audience is going to be very difficult.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (21 minutes, 41 seconds)
Advertising in mobile video is an important revenue stream for many content providers, so understanding how to optimize the viewer experience is essential.
At the 9th annual Video Advertising Summit on May 29th, mobile video advertising was the subject of a panel including Henry Embelton (Head of Ad Products and Revenue, Ellation), Dan Hurwitz (Chief Revenue Officer, Penthera), Bobby LaCivita (VP of Research and Measurement, Group Nine Media), and Colin Dixon (Founder and Principal Analyst, nScreenMedia) moderating.
Among the topics discussed were mobile video distribution in social vs. owned and operated properties, which video ad units work best in mobile video, how offline ad-supported mobile video experiences are being enabled, how mobile drives video consumption for younger audiences and key challenges in mobile video given the fragmentation across many different apps/services.
It’s in the script for every OTT service with an app for phones and tablets: “your favorite shows are now available anytime, anywhere!” It’s in the script because marketers know that “available anytime, anywhere” is what audiences want. Their impulse to make this promise is the right one, and it may induce an initial consumer engagement. But failing to deliver on that promise will quickly frustrate users and potentially increase churn. Saying it does not make it reality.
CBS Sports announced yesterday that it will extend unauthenticated streaming of Super Bowl LIII to mobile devices. The move means that viewers do not need to have a pay-TV subscription in order to watch the game on mobile, nor do they need to have wireless service with Verizon, as has been required in past years.
It also means that mobile streaming will be on the same footing as desktop and connected TV viewing, both of which had unauthenticated access the last time CBS had the Super Bowl rights, in 2016. The game will also be available to CBS All Access subscribers.
Jeffrey Katzenberg’s NewTV has officially announced a $1 billion financing led by Madrone Capital Partners and including all of the studios, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Liberty Global and Alibaba. Katzenberg has teamed up with Meg Whitman, formerly CEO of Hewlett Packard and eBay, whom he named CEO of NewTV earlier this year.
NewTV is the biggest bet yet on mobile video, a sector that has been a graveyard for other ventures (e.g. Verizon’s Go90, Samung’s Milk, Comcast’s Watchable, Vessel, Vine, etc.). Katzenberg believes things will be different for NewTV (still a placeholder name), by licensing short-form, high-quality content from studios and then creating two subscription tiers, one with a full ad load and one with a lighter ad load.
Katzenberg told the WSJ that NewTV programming could run over $100K per minute, comparable to network TV. Episodes will run 10 minutes or less.
Verizon reported its Q2 ’18 earnings this morning, which included a whopping $658 million pre-tax charge for shutting down its GO90 mobile video service (previously announced) that it launched less than 3 years ago, in October, 2015. If you combine the Q2 charge with the operating expenses, capital Verizon invested in GO90 plus the OnCue acquisition from Intel, it’s highly likely that the company lost well over $1 billion on the failed initiative.
For a behemoth like Verizon, a $1 billion loss barely registers. However, it’s almost certainly the biggest single investment any company has made to try to start a mobile video service from scratch (though former DreamWorks executive Jeffrey Katzenberg, whose NewTV startup has raised over $800 million could well take the crown from Verizon).
Given the magnitude of Verizon’s loss, it’s worth trying to understand how the GO90 bet went so wrong, so quickly. From my vantage point, there are 3 key lessons to be learned:
At our recent VideoNuze Online Video Ad Summit, we had a great session focused on succeeding with mobile video which included Chris Carey (Head of Sales, Strategy and Business Development, Verizon Digital Media Services), Amy Mbagwu (Head of Branding Sales, Taboola), Jeremy Sigel (Global SVP of Content and Innovation, Essence), with Keith Grossman (Global Chief Revenue Officer, Bloomberg Media, moderating.
The session explored user behavior in mobile, why scale and premium content matter most to ad buyers, the role of brand safety, how mobile contrasts with OTT delivery, cross-device IDs, the impact of social media / walled gardens, how to use data effectively in mobile and much more.
As a Patriots fan, it was a bummer watching them go down in last night’s Super Bowl, but one major positive surprise was that streaming the game was a superb experience. I was on the road, and watched the entire game (except for the last minute) using the NBC Sports app on my iPad, on the public WiFi network in Palm Beach International airport in Florida where I arrived early for my flight which ended up delayed.
I could have watched on any number of TVs in restaurants or camped out on the floor like the fans below watching on TVs mounted in the terminal. But the circumstances created a good opportunity to see what it would really be like to be dependent on streaming.
Independent programmatic mobile video ad platform Beachfront Media has sold a majority stake to two private equity firms, Growth Catalyst Partners and PSP Capital, a fund started by Penny Pritzker who was previously Secretary of Commerce in the Obama administration. Deal terms were not announced.
As part of the investment, Bill Jennings, previously president of Page Science, will become CEO of Beachfront, with prior colleague Rich O’Connor becoming CFO. Beachfront co-founder and CEO Frank Sinton will become president, while is co-founder and wife Lisa Connell, will leave the business (both will remain owners).
Topics: Beachfront Media
Mobile video usage is exploding as smartphones proliferate, adoption of unlimited data plans grows and social platforms dominate. In this context, optimizing mobile video monetization is more important than ever. At our recent Online Video Ad Summit, our panel “How to Monetize Mobile Video’s Coming Explosion” explored the various opportunities and challenges mobile video represents. These include the context, measurement, fragmentation, ad formats, ad load, viewers’ expectations and lots more.
The session included Brian Danzis (Head of Global Video Monetization, Spotify), Romain Job (GM, Americas, Smart AdServer), Justin Fadgen (VP, Business Development, Beachfront Media) and Mike Law (EVP, Managing Director of Video Investments, Dentsu Aegis Network U.S.) with Tim Hanlon (CEO, The Vertere Group) moderating.
Watch the video (35 minutes, 30 seconds).
On yesterday’s Time Warner Q1 ’17 earnings call, HBO’s CEO Richard Plepler said that the company’s content licensing deal with Amazon would not be renewed and therefore would expire at the end of 2018. The deal was originally announced in April, 2014 and allowed Amazon to include iconic series like “The Sopranos,” “The Wire,” “Deadwood” and others in its Prime Video service.
Although Plepler cited “an acceleration in our digital business” as the reason for the decision, I believe that the more important driver at work is a repositioning of how the immensely valuable HBO will be used when AT&T’s acquisition of HBO parent Time Warner occurs later this year (assuming regulatory approval is granted, which I think is very likely).
Mobile ad platform AdColony has released results from a number of clients’ recent ad campaigns using its “Instant-Play HD Vertical Video” format. Across the campaigns the format delivered an 89% average video completion rate and a 10% average engagement rate. Clients included UFC, a premium cable TV network, a global consumer tech platform and various Fortune 500 brands. The vertical video ads were inserted across popular mobile apps.
AdColony’s Instant-Play HD format, which is integrated with mobile apps via an SDK, includes a “Dynamic End Card” feature that gives advertisers a way to creatively engage users with a rich experience that includes the ability to swipe, tap, watch, purchase and access more content (samples can be found here).
Mobile accounted for 54% of video views globally in Q4 ’16, up from 46% in Q4 ’15, according to Ooyala’s latest Global Video Index, which tracks hundreds of millions viewers from its 500+ customers around the world. Underscoring mobile’s fast adoption, mobile views were 17% as recently as 2013; Ooyala projects mobile in Q1 ’17 will hit nearly 60% of views, a nearly 4x increase.
As always, smartphones accounted for the lion’s share of overall mobile viewing and in Q4 ’16, they also accounted for virtually all of mobile’s growth. In Q4, smartphones racked up 47% of views, with the remainder on tablets. While smartphones’ share grew by 8 percentage points just in 2016, tablets lost almost a percentage point.
Categories: Mobile Video
There is an unmistakable trend taking hold in the wireless industry: video is quickly becoming bait for big carriers to lure and retain subscribers. All 4 of the biggest U.S. carriers have not only launched unlimited data plans, which are being explicitly promoted for video viewing, but in addition 3 of the 4 (T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon) are also tying in aggressive discounts on video services. As I wrote recently, all of this carrier activity will drive more widespread mobile video use.
The start of the trend can clearly be traced to November, 2015 when T-Mobile launched its Binge On program, which now allows users to watch 120+ video services without impacting the user’s data plan. T-Mobile upped the ante in late 2016 by offering AT&T subscribers who switched to T-Mobile a full year of DirecTV Now for free (a $420 value). In January, T-Mobile further tweaked AT&T by adding a free year of Hulu for these subscribers because of the launch problems DirecTV Now experienced.
I’m pleased to present the 359th edition of the VideoNuze podcast with my weekly partner Colin Dixon of nScreenMedia.
This week Colin and I interview Arielle Sumits, who is the senior analyst and founder of Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (“VNI”), which has become the gold standard for forecasting data traffic on fixed and wireless networks globally. The interview is focused on mobile video, which the latest VNI forecasts will account for 78% of mobile traffic in 2021.
Arielle shares many insights about what’s driving mobile video as well as the nuances of the market. We dive into the role of smartphones, the trend toward unlimited data plans by mobile carriers, the impact of “reverse migration” from WiFi networks, how video applications like social, live-streaming and long-form viewing will grow, which companies are driving mobile video content usage, how zero-rating will impact mobile viewing, 5G’s rollout schedule and lots more.
Overall, Arielle provides terrific context on mobile video’s future and her comments reinforce my belief that mobile video is at a tipping point.
Listen in to learn more!
Click here to listen to the podcast (32 minutes, 26 seconds)
Mobile video is white hot, and here’s yet another data point illustrating it: 67% of U.S. consumers say they watch mobile video daily, which is almost equal to the 70% of U.S. consumers who say they watch video on their desktop or laptops daily. And 62% of consumers say they plan to watch more online videos in the next 6 months, on whichever device is handiest.
The data comes from AOL’s new 2017 State of the Video Industry Global Research Study, which covered 7 different markets.
Another day, another move by a major wireless carrier that further boosts mobile video. Yesterday, Verizon announced that it is offering unlimited data plans, for $80/month for the first line and $45/month for subsequent lines. It’s the first time Verizon has offered an unlimited data option since 2011 and is yet another sign of how aggressively wireless carriers are embracing mobile video as a key value proposition, in turn pressuring their business model of incremental payments for data usage.
Cisco has released the latest version of its Mobile Visual Networking Index, now forecasting that video will account for 78% of all mobile data traffic by 2021, increasing in volume by 9x since 2016 when it accounted for 60% of mobile traffic.
The new target updates Cisco’s previous mobile video bullishness; in 2015 Cisco forecast that mobile video would account for 72% of all mobile traffic by 2019. Overall, Cisco is forecasting that 38 out of the 49 exabytes per month that will cross mobile networks in 2021 will be video.
Categories: Mobile Video