Consumer expectations of streamed content sky high – research reveals/in News, Whats new
Source: StreamingMediaGlobal.com, 24 October 2018
The growing number of over the top (OTT) streaming video services face being left behind if they fail to keep up with consumers ever increasing expectations, according to a new industry whitepaper.
OTT Insights: Uptake, perceptions and the worldwide evolution 2018, released by Switch Media – a world leader in OTT streaming technology, reveals a growing dependence on streaming and therefore a new level of demand and expectation which, if left unmet, may have viewers switching off.
It says: “Consumers are enthusiastically lapping up streaming technology, but also have high expectations when it comes to how the content is delivered to them.”
Insights from exclusive research contained within the whitepaper found that the streaming experience is an ongoing issue for many. The top five issues raised by consumers include buffering, ad placement and transitions, content availability, loading times and crashing.
Switch Media CEO, Mark Johns, said the OTT streaming industry is rapidly evolving, creating new opportunities and new challenges.
“We are seeing the introduction of an ever-growing number of streaming services, an increase in original content and exclusive deals, the move towards aggregator sites offering free and paid content, and the debut of immersive content,” Mr Johns said.
“But the biggest challenge is that viewers have a near zero-tolerance policy to poor streaming experiences and expect industry players to meet their growing demands, or face being left behind in a highly contested market.
“Our research identifies advertising as a key area for improvement, with four in ten respondents listing poor ad insertion among their major complaints of streaming services.”
Buffering around ads, poor timing of ad appearance, repetition of ad content and too many ads were among the main issues identified by consumers.
Based on findings from research by Stable Research, exclusive to Switch Media, the whitepaper reveals some significant and enlightening insights and stats around current media viewing habits, perceptions and expectations. These include:
- Buffering is the biggest issue (50 per cent) followed by ad placement and transitions (41 per cent), content availability (32 per cent), loading times (29 per cent), crashing (24 per cent), content searchability (21 per cent) and image quality (19 per cent).
- 92 per cent of streaming service consumers are likely to change their viewing behaviour due to poorly inserted ads.
- On average 2.6 ads during one hour of streamed content is perceived as tolerable;
- 61 per cent of consumers prefer one long advertisement, as opposed to multiple shorter ads;
- Consumers want to be rewarded for the length of time they stay tuned to a video stream, with 71 per cent saying they should see fewer ads after “binging” on a program;
- The most popular place to watch streamed content is the living room (86 per cent), followed by the bedroom (57 per cent), while 15 per cent viewed streamed content while in the bathroom or on the toilet; and,
- Foxtel Go was ranked the best for ad placement, followed by SBS and then free-to-air operators.
With the content streaming industry surging across the globe, Mr Johns said the whitepaper plays an important role in better understanding the current streaming climate and the issues facing content providers.
“Understanding these key pitfalls within Australia’s streaming landscape gives the industry as a whole a better idea of how to keep consumers engaged and gain insights on what industry players can do to remain relevant,” he said.
“A key focus of our research was to shed light on one of the biggest challenges the industry faces – monetisation- and help the industry succeed in this lucrative and booming market. ”
For more information and insights, download the whitepaper here: OTT Insights: Uptake, perceptions and the worldwide evolution 2018
About Switch Media: Founded in 2006, Switch Media is a world leader in delivering online video content for a diverse range of industries, from broadcasters and content providers through to educational institutions and government. Utilising its multi-screen video platform, Media Manager, coupled with a world-class technical team, Switch Media deliver OTT video solutions for a superior Live and Catch-Up viewing experience – anywhere, anytime, on any device. Its services include content editing platforms, app development, tools to monetise content, through to the delivery of video to end users across multiple devices. switch.tv
Link to article: http://www.streamingmediaglobal.com/PressRelease/View.aspx?PRGuid=48127
0411 212 965
Immersive video content is the future, says Switch Media CEO Mark Johns/in News, Whats new
Source: MEDIAWEEK, 12 September 2018
Written by Kruti Joshi
Switch Media is the silent partner of some of the biggest broadcasters in Australia.
The Sydney-based streaming media tech company has been around for 12 years and one of its first clients was ABC iview. The company doesn’t provide the technology for the platform any more, but it still works with Foxtel, SBS, Ten and Seven.
Switch Media CEO Mark Johns was with the company when it initially launched and was operating out of an apartment in Pyrmont. After a gap of about five years, Johns rejoined the company in his current role in September 2017.
“The company started off by accident,” he told Mediaweek. “The founders, Christopher Stenhouse and Luke Durham, were working on a website, around the same time as YouTube launched, for curated content that people wanted to see.
“One of the people they pitched the idea to said, ‘I hate the content but I love your technology.’ From that point the skew was the technology.”
The founder and CEO of Switch Media came from a broadcast engineering background. This helped the company understand how to build a digital streaming and catch-up platforms in a way that would set it apart from linear television.
“When we started, we were not an internet company but at the core we were a broadcast engineering company. Now we are both,” Johns said.
“Coming from that broadcast engineering background we could really help networks understand what they could do with this new technology.”
Australian households have warmed up to streaming. According to recent research by Roy Morgan, 13 million Australians have access to some form of subscription TV or pay TV service such as Foxtel, Fetch TV, Stan and Netflix. Nearly 10 million Australians have access to a Netflix subscription. Meanwhile, two million are able to view content on Stan.
What is next for streaming in Australia?
“A lot of people are interested in immersive experience for content like sports. This is a very personal experience,” Johns said. “There is also a big drive for content being consumed on connected television. More families are getting around TVs in the lounge room. So it’s going two ways.”
A new study from Switch Media of 1,000 consumers showed that 70% of the respondents would be interested in streaming content in either 360-degree view, virtual reality or an augmented reality environment.
Broadcasters and streaming services have started to test these technologies already. Recently, Optus Sport launched the FIFA Virtual Reality app for the World Cup. However, it wasn’t marketed very well, according to Johns.
While companies have started trialling this new technology, it is still expensive and uses a lot of bandwidth. There is still much work to be done to optimise video quality and bandwidth, Johns said.
“There are also challenges around buffering and ad insertions,” he said.
There is work to be done to make them cost-effect. Locally, it won’t become a norm in the immediate future, Johns predicted
Speaking about Switch Media’s biggest growth opportunities, Johns looked at breaking outside the Australia and New Zealand, saying it would provide a good opportunity for the company to learn about the implementation of immersive technologies.
Link to article: https://mediaweek.com.au/morning-report-archive/september-17-2018/
Keep an eye out for our detailed whitepaper, OTT Insights: uptake, perceptions and the worldwide evolution, COMING SOON!
SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER to be one of the first to receive this whitepaper which looks at the progression of this cultural revolution and reveals interesting insights and statistics from our exclusive research around Australia’s media viewing habits, perceptions and expectations.
Upgrade sets standard for IPTV delivery to smart devices/in News, Whats new
READ MEDIA RELEASE
Source: M+AD! NZ MEDIA & ADVERTISING NEWS DAILY, 2 August 2018
New Zealand’s new Freeview On Demand service is setting the standard for video on demand delivery to smart TVs via HbbTV, said FreeviewNZ’s Jason Foden at the Mediatech Pacific Conference 2018 in Auckland yesterday.
Developed by leading Over the Top solution provider Switch Media, the On Demand service commenced a rolling launch earlier last month to replace the previous FreeviewPlus offering.
One of the key features of Switch’s technology, and benefit for ad agencies/media buyers/clients, is the ability of their technology to deliver streamed programmes without the annoying buffering. The system also “dodges” or goes around ad-blocker to ensure client ads are delivered to the viewing audience.
The service provides viewers with a major upgrade to the previous FreeviewPlus platform with seamless browsing, effortless streaming and optimised playback of TVNZ, Three and Maori Television content.
Foden said the solution, a single Freeview App supported by the Switch Media back end, met the needs of the changing face of media and entertainment consumption in New Zealand for now and the future.
“Switch Media provided a flexible and innovative framework for on-boarding of participating broadcaster content compatible with a range of popular Smart TVs in the NZ market,” he said.
“The viewer-centric approach taken in its development means viewers can now enjoy easier access to On Demand and a more seamless viewing experience.”
Switch Media delivers world-class OTT solutions for clients across a diverse range of industries, from broadcasters and content providers, through to educational institutions and government. They work with the major broadcasters in Australia – including Channel 7, Network Ten, SBS, ABC and Foxtel – and developed the world-first multi-award-winning Freeview FV mobile app.
“One of the key benefits for ad agencies/media buyers/clients, is the ability of the technology to deliver streamed programmes without the annoying buffering.”
Its Chief Technical Officer, Luke Durham, said the new delivery solution not only immediately enhances the viewing experience, but also presents Freeview and their member broadcasters the chance to grow the audience and realise new revenue opportunities.
“If we look at why leading streaming companies around the world are so successful, it’s because they give people what they want and make it easy for them to access it,” he said.
“The Freeview On Demand platform makes the viewing experience consistent across all programmes and expands the features to improve the overall experience.
“By pooling resources into a single service, it has enabled Freeview NZ and its member broadcasters to lower costs, as well as improve quality and reliability, and foster innovation.
“The platform we have delivered for Freeview NZ can easily be extended in the future beyond smart TVs and made available on companion services, so people can watch live and on-demand TV shows and movies anywhere at any time.”
The Freeview On-Demand platform also enables a range of new features that are, or soon will be available for viewers, including the ability to: browse and search the programme guide without interrupting the current program they are watching;
- plan viewing on the go using reminders and notifications;
- control their Personal Video Recorders (PVR) from anywhere so they can set up recordings remotely; and,
- record and playback programmes without a PVR, where the recordings are created in the ‘cloud’.
- The development of IP streaming on the Freeview service will also enable niche content offerings to be made available which is not feasible using the traditional broadcast approach.
Durham said the most significant optimisation that benefits advertisers and viewers alike is the introduction of server-side ad insertion.
“The ads are stitched into the VOD streams before they are sent to the screen, which eliminates buffering and gives a more seamless TV-like experience,” he said.
“Furthermore, the solution provides insights that enable broadcasters to deliver a personalised viewing experience for their audience. They can serve ads tailored to the viewer based on information such as viewing history, location or by specific rules, ensuring maximum ad revenue.
“Not only is this good for broadcasters but also for viewers. Research we recently conducted shows viewers don’t mind advertising, especially on free-to-air TV, provided it isn’t too intrusive or disruptive, and is relevant. Server-side ad insertion technology, such as AdEase, is a key solution to this problem.”
About Switch Media
Switch Media is an Australian company founded in 2006 that is a world leader in delivering online video solutions for a diverse range of industries, from broadcasters and content providers through to educational institutions and government. Utilising its multi-screen video platform, Media Manager, coupled with a world-class technical team, Switch Media delivers OTT solutions for a superior Live and Catch-Up viewing experience – anywhere, anytime, on any device. Its services include content editing platforms, app development, tools to monetise content, through to the delivery of video to end users across multiple devices.
Proud end-to-end service provider for the new Freeview On Demand NZ platform/in News, Whats new
Switch Media is excited to have provided end-to-end development and delivery of the Freeview On Demand platform. Read Freeview Limited press release below to find out more.
“Freeview NZ is pleased to have partnered with OTT service provider Switch Media to deliver the new Freeview On Demand platform. Switch Media provided a flexible and innovative framework for easy on-boarding of participating broadcaster content, compatible with a range of popular Smart TVs in the NZ market. The viewer-centric approach taken in its development means viewers can now enjoy easier access to On Demand and a more seamless viewing experience.” – Freeview CEO, Jason Foden
Freeview launches new On Demand Experience
Source: PRESS RELEASE | FREEVIEW LIMITED | Tuesday 3 July 2018
Freeview has commenced roll-out of a new On Demand TV Platform to replace the existing FreeviewPlus service. The new Freeview On Demand provides a more seamless experience and easier access to free shows and movies you can watch any time, directly on your TV. Implemented in collaboration with leading New Zealand broadcasters (TVNZ, MediaWorks, Māori Television and RNZ), the new platform supersedes the broadcasters’ own TVNZ OnDemand, ThreeNow and Māori Television On Demand apps previously linked to FreeviewPlus. By combining shows across all participating broadcasters into a single content library and streaming them all within the new Freeview On Demand platform, it greatly improves content discovery and access.
Viewers are free to browse by genre, catch up by channel or locate specific titles through the search feature.
And rather than being sent to a show page on a linked broadcaster app, the show or movie selected by the viewer in the Freeview On Demand library will now play straight
away. Viewers will be asked to register for a new Freeview account when they stream their first show, so they won’t need to register for multiple accounts as more content partners are added. Signing up to a new Freeview account can also provide viewing history and deliver personalisation features in the future.
Freeview CEO, Jason Foden, says the platform has been designed with the viewer at the heart of the experience.
“Everything about the upgraded platform is designed to give our viewers the best experience possible. Its simple design and streamlined playback help to improve performance, a simpler mini guide points to a compelling On Demand library, the TV Guide provides more information at a glance, it’s easier to use and remains free.
“I’m confident the simplicity of the new platform and its visually-compelling interface will give Kiwis a greater viewing experience.” Foden concludes.
The new Freeview On Demand is available now on selected Smart TVs and will roll out over the coming week to all Smart TVs released since July 2015, as well as connected
set-top boxes and recorders.
Viewers who already have access to On Demand content through Freeview (or FreeviewPlus) will get an automatic upgrade. Those who do not currently access Freeview On Demand, but have fairly new Smart TV (2015-2017) can get it by simply connecting to a working TV antenna and broadband.
And yes, as with everything from Freeview, the new Freeview On Demand platform, its full suite of features and content are all free to access.
Find out more about the New Freeview On Demand here.
New Freeview On Demand – key changes:
- Replaces FreeviewPlus and its linked broadcaster apps
- Easier access to On Demand and Catch Up TV
- Introducing a new Freeview account
- Simpler Mini Guide
- TV Guide provides more channels at a glance
- Universal search by title, genre or channel
- Browse by genres or by channel
- Featured and Popular bands highlight the latest and greatest TV
About Freeview www.freeviewnz.tv
For more details please contact: Sophie Wills One Plus One Communications
09 951 3947 | 021 889 362 | email@example.com
What are the benefits and evolution of SSAI? Switch Media’s Mark Wilson discusses both with SpotX./in News, Whats new
Mark Wilson, COO of Switch Media caught up with SpotX at NAB Show 2018 to discuss SSAI and our partnership with SpotX.
AdEase and SpotX compatibility allows content providers to take full advantage of AdEase, improving user experience and engagement.
WATCH VIDEO TO FIND OUT MORE:
Proud service provider for the AWARD WINNING Freeview Plus app!/in News, Whats new
As proud OTT service provider for Freeview AU, Switch Media is thrilled to have facilitated end-to-end delivery of the award-winning Freeview Plus service upgrade.
Winning Best TV/Video Upgrade or Launch at the international 2018 Connies Awards in London, the upgrade was designed to make content discovery easier than ever before, with a simplified user experience, additional features and a fresh look and feel.
Having worked with Freeview to deliver the world-first Freeview FV mobile app, Switch Media was best placed to facilitate the Freeview Plus service upgrade which launched on June 21st 2017, delivering to more than 2.2 million Freeview Plus-enabled TVs across Australia.
“The Freeview Plus upgrade is a significant one and we are excited to deliver the next level in content discovery and choice for Australia’s free-to-air TV programming. Australian broadcasters are truly leading the world in innovation and providing a complete TV experience. With this upgrade and our recently launched Freeview FV mobile app, viewers not only have great convenience but also a fantastic choice of how, when and where they watch their favourite content – for free.”
– Liz Ross, CEO, Freeview Australia
READ FREEVIEW MEDIA RELEASE, 8 May 2018
Freeview Plus awarded top honour at international Connies Awards
Freeview has won Best TV/Video Upgrade or Launch for its Freeview Plus service upgrade at the prestigious Connies Awards, announced overnight in London.
The only Australian company to win an award, this marks the third win for Freeview in the category, winning in 2015^ for the launch of Freeview Plus and again in 2017 for Freeview FV, the world-first free-toair industry TV live streaming and catch-up mobile app.
The Connies Awards recognise innovation and best practices from all sectors of the media landscape around the world. The awards showcase initiatives that meet the needs of leading media businesses and practitioners in delivering value to the ever-more connected consumer.
“This is a great tribute to the amazing team effort behind the significant Freeview Plus upgrade,” said Freeview CEO Elizabeth Ross.
“With this upgrade and the world-first Freeview FV mobile app, viewers not only have great convenience but also a fantastic choice of how, when and where they watch their favourite content – for free.”
Key to the Freeview Plus upgrade was the implementation of world’s best practice interface design which features image-based browsing and the introduction of the Explore TV function.
Explore TV presents viewers with image-based carousels including personalised recommendations and favourites along with live TV, catch up and genre-based browsing.
The Freeview Plus upgrade features also include an easy-to-use guide with backwards navigation to catch-up content and a simplified Mini Guide for quick program discovery.
Freeview Plus is a hybrid digital television service that provides access to catch-up free-to-air programming on TVs and has led the world since it launched in 2014, consistently winning local and international accolades for its ground-breaking technology and user interface.
Launched in 2008, Freeview is the free digital television service in Australia which presents and promotes free-to-air channels and content to all Australians. Freeview encourages Australians to watch free-to-air content across various platforms by promoting benefits that include more than 25 channels and catch-up services for free. Freeview’s mission is to deliver the free-to-air content to all Australians where, when and on whatever device they choose.
^ Previously the Videonet Connected TV Awards
SpotX and Switch Media partner in OTT personalised ads play/in News, Whats new
Source: Mumbrella 03 April 2018
Video monetisation platform SpotX has teamed with online streaming company Switch media to offer personalised ads on Over The Top mobile services.
SpotX Partners With Switch Media To Offer Personalised Ads Across OTT
SpotX, a global video advertising and monetisation platform, today announced a compatibility with Switch Media, one of the world’s leading cloud-based streaming companies, to power server-side ad insertion (SSAI) for personalised advertising across live, sports, events and video on demand (VOD). The solution is part of AdEase, Switch Media’s multi-screen, digital product offering.
As viewership on desktop, mobile, and connected TV devices continues to rise, more efficient monetisation opportunities have emerged for broadcasters, enabling them to target viewers with personalised advertising. The SpotX and AdEase compatibility allows broadcasters working with SpotX to take full advantage of Switch Media’s AdEase, which improves the user experience and increases engagement by providing one continuous video stream without any buffering during live TV and VOD for uninterrupted viewing. AdEase also protects ad revenue by surpassing most ad blockers. The server-side nature of AdEase is particularly useful around live content where ad delays are often commonplace.
“Delivering targeted ads on live linear OTT feeds for sports and live entertainment can be challenging – especially from a user experience, accuracy and scalability viewpoint; using the traditional methods of inserting mid-roll ads on the client-side causes buffering, latency and can allow the user to block those ads,” said Mark Wilson from Switch Media. “This partnership means our broadcast clients, already using our AdEase product, can at any stage decide to deliver targeted ads in real-time via SSAI in a given ad break via the SpotX platform, including live broadcast.”
AdEase benefits publishers and advertisers by improving the user experience (allowing for more engaged customers) with on the fly ad insertion during live TV, expanding the number of addressable devices through easy integrations, and by maximising, and protecting ad revenue by surpassing most ad blockers.
“As people consume video across different devices, SSAI provides an opportunity for broadcasters to overlay data and make their inventory more valuable to buyers increasing the yield,” said Christopher Blok, Country Manager, SpotX ANZ. “Addressable advertising sits at the forefront of broadcasters’ thinking now while server-side ad insertion, particularly for live simulcast, is a critical element for them and we are excited to be able to offer this end-to-end service for broadcasters with Switch Media, a product fit for the total video universe.”
From a SpotX media release.
Proud end-to-end service provider for the Freeview FV roll out to Apple TV/in News, Whats new
Switch Media is excited to have provided end-to-end development and delivery of the Freeview FV app roll out to the Apple TV and Apple TV 4K platforms. Delivery included app development, user experience and interface design, the provision of flexible API with support for complex business rules, Electronic Program Guide using Gracenote data, 3rd party player integration and OzTAM VPM analytics integration.
Now for the first time, viewers can stream all free-to-air TV in one place from the comfort of their home without the need for an antenna or traditional broadcast receiver. The FV Apple TV app delivers one of the most user-friendly Free-To-Air EPG’s in the market, enabling viewers to easily see what is coming up for the next 7 days, set favourites, and receive recommendations.
Read Freeview press release:
Freeview FV now available on the App Store for Apple TV
Watching your favourite TV programs is now even easier with Freeview FV, as the world-first free-to-air
TV live streaming app is now available on Apple TV 4K and Apple TV.
Freeview FV delivers live streaming from 20 free-to-air channels and catch-up content from all free-to-air
TV channels. The app also includes a TV guide, allows users to browse and search across all free-to-air TV,
set favourites, and provides show recommendations.
Freeview CEO Liz Ross said the addition of Freeview FV for Apple TV 4K and Apple TV was the latest
development for the platform and offers viewers even more choice in live and catch-up programs from the
comfort of their own homes on their TV.
“We are thrilled to have Freeview FV now available in the App Store for Apple TV, making live streaming
more accessible than ever. “We want everyone in every household to be able to watch free-to-air TV on their terms, where and when
they choose,” said Ross.
Launched in November 2016, Freeview FV is also available on iOS and Android mobile and tablets with
Chromecast and Apple TV support delivering TV straight into viewers’ hands.
Freeview FV delivers live streaming of 20 free-to-air TV channels and the catch-up content from all
networks with just one click. Available channels include: ABC, SBS, Seven, Channel 9, TEN, ONE, ELEVEN,
ABC COMEDY, ABC KIDS, ABC ME, ABC NEWS, SBS VICELAND, Food Network, NITV, 7TWO, 7Mate,
7Flix, Racing.com, 9Gem, 9Go! and 9Life.
Source: Freeview FV now available on the App Store for Apple TV, Freeview, 1 March 2018
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