Online Video Surges But Mobile Viewership Flat
The speed at which online video viewership has increased is highlighted in the latest figures from comScore that measure video rankings in the US. They revealed that 180 million US Internet users watched online video during the month of March. This meant that 3 out of every 4 online video viewers watched online video.
The explosion of online video has been driven by the availability of a robust broadband infrastructure. This has been coupled with advances in streaming technology including cheap media storage and processing. This has meant online video download and viewing times are minimal and, more importantly, delays are small enough to be acceptable to the average online user.
The speed with which video usage has taken off mean revenue projections for those providing video advertising solutions are likely to be on the healthy side. Products such as Google Adsense and YuMe offer ways to deliver and measure advertising within videos, enabling video producers to confidently plan to recoup production costs, on the assumption that the video is at least moderately successful.
The comScore figures exclude the playing of mobile devices. Google Android, one of the two main mobile platforms (the other being IPhone) has just upgraded the Skyfire browser. It now provides social networking information in addition to video content.
In contrast to buoyant online video figures, a recent survey in the US from eMarketer respondents stated that 26% were not interested at all in Mobile TV and Video. The majority were interested to varying degrees. Reasons against were perceived cost and the lack of utility for mobile as an effective medium for video.
The number remained flat from the 2009 survey so while online video on desktops and laptops creeps toward the total number of users, the picture on mobile video as a popular medium looks far from complete. Video on mobiles may be realistically limited to minutes, as the screen dimensions make watching regular blockbusters unlikely, but there still may ultimately be a healthy revenue stream for mobile video technology providers and ad agencies, making and hosting offerings from viral clips to innovative trailers and infomercials.