VOD will be big, but should consolidate

A major consumer study into VOD by Essential Research has been developed in consultation with industry players – including the BBC, Virgin, C4, ITV and – Current VOD services are the tip of the iceberg. VOD – in its broadest sense – will have a seismic impact on TV viewing – but this will be to the enormous benefit of audiences and many sectors of the industry

– The media industry needs to stop thinking ';Internet versus TV' and start considering on-demand simply as a new way for consumers to choose what to watch

– The over-riding consumer demand is for a consolidated VOD platform – a familiar one-stop-shop destination for all VOD content. The current proliferation of VOD services will see winners and losers as audiences migrate to aggregated content portals

– At the same time, consumers also expect an integrated approach to delivery of linear, recorded and on-demand TV – for consumers ';what I want to watch' is about the content not the delivery mechanisms after all

– Currently, the only parties benefiting from competing proprietary VOD portals are illegal streaming and file-sharing providers – they already aggregate content which attracts consumers. The industry must collaborate to provide a genuine, legal service alternative for audiences

– Channel brands will increasingly be fighting a head-to-head battle with studios and production companies for VOD rights – without these, some channels will not survive

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