The streaming industry is growing faster and faster, becoming the most popular way of enjoying entertainment. Well-known platforms, such as Netflix and Disney+, have added features like live sports, original shows, and advertisements, making 2022 an important year for streaming services. In order to stay competitive, they must keep improving their offers for user growth.
The current situation is pushing operators to build a more advanced infrastructure that can handle the steadily increasing demands of streaming. IP video streaming is not enough; the process has become more complex, with components that need to be adjusted precisely. This is why video is playing a major role in current digital transformation opportunities. Examples of this can be seen in the HBO Max/Discovery+ combination, Netflix’s password-sharing rules and the rise of ad-supported platforms.
Now, these players must take a more aggressive approach. Let’s take a look at some of the different companies that are competing for a greater share of the streaming market.
J.P. Morgan analyst Doug Anmuth has estimated that Netflix’s “Basic with Ads” plan will attract 7.5 million subscribers this year alone. The company is looking into new initiatives for the upcoming months, such as the launch of the “Extra Members” feature, an investment in cloud gaming to expand their library, and potential live streaming for unscripted shows and stand-up specials. Mike Verdu, Vice President of Games at Netflix, is exploring different options for members to have access on TVs and PCs.
Disney+ initiative in pursuit of reaching 230/260 million subscribers by 2024 involves soon-to-come price hikes on its plans together with the weaving of a wider international coverage that will bring the total to around 160 countries by 2023.
In 2023, HBO Max and Discovery+ will join forces to create an all-in-one streaming service called “Max”. This upcoming streaming platform has the potential to be a major player in the industry, as the combined subscriber count of the two services associated with it has already surpassed 94.9 million by the end of the third quarter of 2022.
Among the ideas to be developed, WBD (Warner Bros. Discovery) is expected to dedicate its time to planning a free ad-supported streaming (FAST) service and pulling over HBO originals as its streaming strategy.
Hulu’s ownership is currently under discussion. A potential Disney/Comcast negotiation plan could begin earlier than originally planned in 2024. Bob Chapek, Disney’s CEO, has expressed an eagerness to combine the two companies sooner rather than later.
It appears Amazon is again focusing its attention on expanding its content and live sporting events, and reaching a potential agreement with Warner Bros. to offer DC-based animated shows on Prime Video. Rumors also suggest the platform could be taking a risk by launching theatrical films, requiring a significant amount of financial input.
As the market continues to expand, with a projected growth rate of USD 1,690.35 billion by 2029, businesses must remain creative and adaptive in order to stay ahead of the competition and secure user base growth. Engaging in innovative strategies and responding to customer needs are essential elements of long term success in the market. Companies should be constantly researching and developing new ways to meet customer demands, or risk being left behind in the race for customer acquisition.