Cloud services for video provider Brightcove has published the Q2 Brightcove Global Video Index, a report that analyses hundreds of millions of recent data points to provide insights into how viewers are watching video content, which devices they are using, and what types of content they are consuming across these various devices.
Mobile consumption surges
The report findings show that 53 per cent of global video views begin on mobile devices, smartphones, and tablets, taking away share from traditional desktop computers. Smartphones saw the highest growth, to 45 per cent from 38 per cent only one year ago. In emerging markets, especially Asia Pacific (APAC), mobile is king, where a whopping 84 per cent of all plays were on mobile phones, and with Japan/Korea at 58 per cent. In the Middle East and Africa, smartphone share was 57 per cent. In every region but the Americas (US and Canada), mobile devices took share away from desktop computers.
“Leveraging mobile video continues to be crucial for OTT providers, as they look to not only reach younger viewers – who traditionally have been mobile first – but also older viewers who have discovered that mobile video is a convenient way to consume content outside the home,” said Jim O’Neill, Principal Analyst, Brightcove. “The amount of content being consumed on mobile devices has more than doubled over the past year. This is largely due to the fact that content owners and distributors are making premium content available to consumers anywhere, any time, and on any device. This growth will continue as more content – especially high-value sports content – becomes more prevalent and easily accessible on mobile devices.”
iOS vs Android
The dominance of iOS on mobile devices has eroded in the past year with video viewed on Android devices are now more prevalent in four regions, versus iOS devices dominant in only three. Globally, Android smartphone share has increased to 68 per cent from 59 per cent one year ago, with iOS remaining dominant for tablet plays. Android use is highest in APAC, where 92 per cent of video plays are on Android phones and tablets. Europe is the next highest with 70 per cent of video plays on Android devices. Only Japan/Korea continues to see growth in iOS.
Engagement patterns by device
Continuing a recent trend, long-form video (21-40 minutes) and ultra-long-form video (41+ minutes) saw faster growth in the share of ‘time watched’ on every device, from connected TVs to smartphones. Ultra-long-form content took the highest total share of ‘time watched’ across all devices, despite short-form video (0-5 minutes) having the highest number of assets published.
The increasing quality of delivery to mobile devices, cheaper data plans, and more affordable Android smartphones from China have had a significant impact on how content is consumed.
“Mobile is no longer dominated by snackable content – instead, it provides a multi-course meal to consumers,” O’Neill said, “At the International Broadcasting Conference (IBC) earlier this month, the discussion has changed from what’s included broadly in the content mix to delivering content direct-to-consumers with more personalisation and fewer limitations.”