Mobile VideoAmericans are spending more time watching mobile TV and video, and they’re doing so across screens. Though smartphones continue to be viewers’ primary means of viewing mobile TV and video content, viewers are spending more time viewing on media tablets, particularly when it comes to watching longer form content, according to a survey conducted by video-to-IP managed services provider QuickPlay Media.

QuickPlay also found a growing interest in multiscreen services on the part of U.S. mobile subscribers. Its 2012 Market Tools survey found that 57% of respondents were interested in a multiscreen video service, up from 48% in 2011. Thirty-five percent reported having tried a mobile TV and/or video service, with 27% reporting they currently use them. Of these:

  • 72 percent have been mobile TV and video users for a year or less; and
  • 81 percent of users indicate that that they watch more mobile TV and/or video on their mobile phone or tablet than a year ago.

“As the market matures, consumers are increasing both their consumption of mobile video and the number of devices on which they access entertainment. This demand presents a significant opportunity for TV service providers to grow their customer base by offering multiscreen services in attractive bundles,” said Wayne Purboo, president and CEO, QuickPlay Media.

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“However, to manage the complexities of delivering high volumes of content across a broad array of devices, we are seeing a growing number of providers looking for managed service options in order to do so securely and cost effectively.” That, coincidentally, is exactly what QuickPlay provides.

With mobile TV and video viewing on the rise in the U.S., usage preferences are changing, according to QuickPlay: 43% of viewers consume mobile TV and video at least once a week; 23% reported doing so daily. In addition:

  • 48 percent of current users most often use the service at home, far more than other reported locations: “between activities” (13 percent), at work (10 percent), while in transit (8 percent) and while waiting in line (8 percent).
  • 38 percent of current users report TV episodes as their most frequently watched programming, followed by sports at 28 percent and news at 19 percent.
  • 51 percent of current users expressed a preference for live programing for sports (30 percent) and TV episodes (21 percent), whereas 34 percent prefer an on-demand format.
  • 63 percent of current mobile TV/video subscribers make use of mobile phones as their primary viewing device, while 33% use tablets.
  • 91 percent of those respondents who own an iPad or similar tablet device have watched a TV program or full-length movie on their tablet, up from 68 percent in 2011; and
  • 75 percent who are tablet owners who have viewed full-length content have a WiFi-only device, which is how most users indicated that they connect to access their TV or video content.

When it comes to service providers and mobile TV/video services, QuickPlay found that bundled services are the primary means of payment, with most subscribers preferring subscription as opposed to pay-per-use models.

Cost, cited by 32% of respondents, continues to be the main barrier holding back potential new subscribers.

  • 51 percent of those who currently use a mobile TV and/or video service pay for it as part of a service bundle from their provider;
  • 31 percent of current mobile TV and/or video users report that they pay an additional subscription fee for their service; and
  • Respondents in general prefer a subscription service (38 percent) for mobile TV and video services (e.g. unlimited TV programs for a set monthly fee) compared to a pay-per-episode (13 percent) or a pay-per-season (5 percent) payment model.

QuickPlay’s survey results also show the stiff competition that established mobile operators face from newer, OTT market entrants. Thirty-four percent of respondents reported their OTT service provider is their primary provider of mobile TV/video services; 34% said it is their TV service provider; and 28% said it is their mobile operator.

Additional report highlights include:

  • Only 20 percent of respondents recall viewing ads on their device while using a mobile TV and/or video service. 81 percent of these respondents highlighted the lack of ad variety as they report seeing the same ads either played across the entire TV service (47 percent) or across the individual channel (34 percent).
  • 74 percent of respondents are interested in viewing mobile TV and/or video channels that integrate social media such as Facebook or Twitter.

 

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