TV Everywhere’s Latest Challenge: Differentiation

by Brett Sappington | Aug. 11, 2014

At one time, launching a new TV Everywhere service was a step that set pay-TV providers apart from the rest of the pack. Leading operators added the systems and content rights to allow delivery of TV programming to their customers on various connected screens. Those that held back, either due to cost considerations or strategy decisions, were left wondering how they would compete in a new world of video consumption. Over time, many jumped into the multiscreen fray, correctly discovering that the landscape for video service delivery was facing a fundamental change.

 As TV Everywhere gains greater penetration among pay-TV providers and improved awareness among consumers, many in the industry are encountering a new challenge – how to provide a unique spin on their new services to again stand out from all of the others offering multiscreen access.

At the same time, multiscreen vendors are facing a similar dilemma. As the penetration of multiscreen delivery capabilities has increased among operators, the number of untapped customers has fallen. While some companies still require replacements or upgrades to their existing systems, the competition among vendors has become fiercer than ever. Differentiation among solutions has become paramount as companies struggle to identify and communicate the unique value within their offerings.

The result of these shifts has been a new emphasis on differentiating features for multiscreen services and solutions. Some of the areas most often discussed include:

  • Discovery – Quickly matching consumers to content is critical to continued use, particularly in the multiscreen world where pay TV services are compared to OTT services in ease of use.
  • User engagement and interaction – The multiscreen environment provides a unique environment that allows users to connect with each other and with content in new ways.
  • Portability – Whether transitioning from one screen to another or moving from in-home viewing to out-of-home viewing, consumers highly value services that offer easy portability of the viewing experience.
  • Expanded content – Many operators are expanding the content choices available as part of their TV Everywhere services.

Over the next several years, multiscreen services will become an integral part of the pay-TV service, both in features and in market strategy. The ability for operators to differentiate their services from direct competitors and OTT services will be a key element in the long term success of pay-TV in the new multiscreen world.

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