The folks who watch the most over-the-top (OTT) video have distinctive viewing habits that vary according to the day of the week and the type of content being viewed, a new study finds.
OTT "power users" are those who visit OTT streaming sites most often and watch the most video, according to the Ooyala Q2 Video Index, released yesterday.
Ooyala Inc. categorizes power users as those who visited an OTT site at least seven days every month (though typically considerably more often), and more times in an average day than most users. As the report put it, power users were those who consume far more content than an average user.
The company argues that these insights into power users can help OTT providers "make the most of the viewing experience and revenue opportunities associated with your most loyal and engaged viewers, and also show how to turn more of your audience members into power users."
The study found the habits of power users on advertising sponsored news sites (AVoD) were different from subscription sites (SVoD) and pay-per-view or transactional sites (TVoD). For example, AVoD usage was 37% higher during the week than on weekends among power users. Power users were also more likely to use a computer than a mobile device, when compared with average AVoD users.
SVoD usage was highest among power users during Friday and Saturday, and interestingly 76% only visited two to three days in a week. Mondays saw the lowest usage among power users. Similarly, TVoD users used their service rarely during the week, but usage is 13 times higher on weekends.
It would seem to me that this is more a function of the type of content: AVoD is more likely to support shorter videos, particularly on a news site. That profile fits in with viewing at work, where a user is more likely to be sitting on a computer. Those who are spending less time viewing videos at work, or are unfortunate enough to sit next to their manager, are more likely to "snack" on videos during their commute or lunch breaks. This would seem to favor lower consumption, and more usage of mobile devices.
Similarly, SVoD users are more likely to be viewing longer-form entertainment content, i.e., Netflix, Hulu etc. This is more likely to fit the profile of a binge viewer, who needs the solid block of time only available to most people on a weekend.
Interestingly, the study also found that power users of AVoD entertainment used it most on Thursdays and Fridays: 17% more than during the first half of the week, but more surprisingly, 37% more than during the weekend.
One explanation for this would be that they are the same people: Power users of AVoD use it during the week, but then switch to their subscription services for the really heavy binge viewing during the weekend. Prior research has found that heavy video consumers tend to consume it across channels. For example, high movie renters were also likely to subscribe to premium pay-TV movie services.
The other interesting insight here is that even power OTT subscription users don't watch much during weekday evenings. Could that be because they are watching normal, linear broadcast TV? That would challenge the cord-cutting debate somewhat. But it's not clear from this study, which only looks at streaming behavior.
Other interesting findings from the study include:
Mobile devices now account for the majority of video streamed, at 51%. This is up 15% from 2015 and 203% from 2014
Videos less than five minutes long account for 55% of views on smartphones, while videos between 20 minutes or longer account for 92% of all videos streamed to a set-top box
Android and iOS devices account for almost all videos streamed to mobile devices (98%)
Last year at this time, nine out of every ten videos streamed to tablets were to an iOS tablet, but today Apple's share has declined to just 65%
Ooyala's Video Index is based on analysis of more than 3.5 billion videos streamed to 220 million users worldwide in the second quarter of this year.
— Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation