Mobile video viewing keeps rising.
According to Nielsen, an average of about 50 million people in the U.S., or 16% of the entire population, watched video on their mobile phones each month during the second quarter of 2013, up from 37 million during the same quarter a year ago.
And those numbers don’t even include tablet viewers.
While still not a majority, it is incredible uptake for an activity that once seemed poorly suited to mobile devices.
In a recent report from BI Intelligence, we look at how each of the major video content players has pushed mobile viewing. They have made moves on a number of fronts to make sure that video is widely available across devices and that people find the experience of watching video on mobile intuitive and compelling.
We break down the extent to which the mobile video boom has changed what people watch, and how. Being able to track the shift to mobile video and predict the type of content that thrives on tablet and phone screens is the key to any long-term media or advertising strategy. The report also spotlights the most significant statistics that show just how many eyeballs are at stake on tablet and smartphone screens.
Here are some examples of how major video content players have adjusted to and driven mobile viewing:
- Netflix: The company deployed its original Netflix app especially for the iPad. It was one of the first apps to be showcased on the iPad at the device’s debut, making the app virtually synonymous with tablet-based video consumption, and the tablet synonymous with video viewing.
- YouTube: In mid-2013, Google reported that 40% of YouTube traffic was viewed on mobile, up from just 25% a year earlier. It’s the payoff for the prescient creation of a mobile-specific engineering team in 2007 before mobile video viewership had really even taken off.
- VEVO: Some of the most successful content on YouTube is created for “channels” that YouTube users can subscribe to. Some of these channels are hugely popular on mobile. VEVO is a music video platform and a joint venture between Google and two of the top global recording companies, Sony and Universal Music Group. Already, one half of VEVO’s audience accesses on mobile.
- Hulu: Hulu is essentially the VEVO of TV. It was conceived as a joint venture of the NBC, Fox, and ABC TV networks. Hulu’s revenue model is similar to YouTube’s ad-driven model. But with its subscription channel, Hulu Plus, Hulu adds a Netflix dimension by offering premium, up-to-date TV content behind a pay wall. Giving the Hulu subscription model a further edge, mobile device viewing is limited to users with a Hulu Plus subscription.
- Vimeo: Vimeo has the lowest profile of the fast-growing platforms, with only about 70 million monthly unique visitors on the ad-supported network, less than half as many monthly visitors as YouTube. There is no solid report on Vimeo’s mobile users or traffic. But Vimeo completely revamped its iOS app in time for the launch of the updated iOS 7, with a key new feature allowing Vimeo members to upload videos to their accounts straight from their iPhone or iPad.
The report is full of charts and data that can be downloaded and put to use.
In full, the report:
- Discusses all the basic data on mobile video usage and audiences, both in the U.S. and globally
- Breaks down how video-viewing differs on tablets and smartphones
- Analyses the content categories that do well on mobile screens, including music and comedy videos, as well as TV and Web serials
- Shows how tablet and smartphone video habits reinforce binge watching, late night consumption, and other online video habits that boost engagement
- Reveals the top YouTube networks and the ecosystem of creators and vendors that’s growing up around them
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