Light Reading

Multiscreen Viewers Want Better Views

Alan Breznick
3/31/2014
50%
50%

Although the quality of streaming video may be improving at a modest pace, it's not improving nearly fast enough for the majority of video viewers.

In a new study on the state of video streaming released Monday, Conviva Inc. reported that consumers are notably less tolerant of video buffering delays and other playback problems than they were just two years ago. In one sign of this growing intolerance, the study found that the amount of time lost from a viewing session with a 1% increase in buffering more than doubled from three minutes in 2011 to eight minutes in 2013. This indicates that viewers switched away from videos with buffering issues a lot sooner than before.

In another sign of growing consumer impatience with poor video streaming delivery quality, the Conviva study found that viewers particularly bolt if they experience playback problems while watching live sports, entertainment, or other live action events in HD. The average viewing time of live action programming in HD plunged from 40 minutes to just one minute when users ran into buffering delays.

Such delivery quality problems will likely make it tougher for service providers to attract and retain subscribers for their multiscreen video offerings. "In those instances, one bad viewing experience on a single device puts all screens at risk," said Colin Dixon, founder and chief analyst of nScreen Media, in a prepared statement. "Continuity of quality across screens is very important."

While streaming video delivery quality is not improving as quickly as consumers want or expect, it is steadily improving, according to Conviva. Its latest global study of 45 billion video streams sent across more than 1.6 billion playback devices found that video buffering actually fell from 39.3% in 2012 to 26.9% last year.

In another sign of improvement, Conviva found that low-resolution delivery of video streams dropped to 43.3% last year from a whopping 63% in 2012. But, even with that improvement, "more than two in five views were grossly inferior video quality, " the firm said.

The increasing emphasis on streaming video quality comes as more consumers are clearly watching more video on more devices. In a corresponding survey of streaming households, Conviva found that the number of concurrent streaming devices in use increased by 28% from 2012 to 2013. This finding corroborates recent research from other organizations. (See Nielsen: Multiscreen Viewing Taking Off.)

Further, Conviva's data shows that different video playback devices are preferred by consumers at different times of the day. In the 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. period, mobile devices emerge as the favorite, accounting for 6.9% of all video streamed daily. PCs take over in the afternoon slot from noon to 4 p.m., accounting for 16.3% of all daily video streams. Then, as might be expected, the TV rules in the evening window from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., accounting for 36.6% of all streaming video.

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

(12)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
TaraSeals
50%
50%
TaraSeals,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/3/2014 | 4:35:22 PM
Re: Which devices?
Really great point Phil-- I think a lot of this does go back to truth in advertising! 
Phil_Britt
50%
50%
Phil_Britt,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/1/2014 | 3:04:40 AM
Re: Which devices?
Tara,

I would go one step further. Once people have an excellent video experience, like at a Best Buy or competitor (as a demo) or see the demonstration of one at a conference or on a commercial, they expect all video to be as good as advertised/experienced, without realizing the excellent ones are done under laboratory conditions, not real-life conditions. 

Power fluctuations, transmission issues and a myriad of other items can prevent the "perfect" experience at home.
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/31/2014 | 11:10:29 PM
Re: Which devices?
I too am more willing to accept it on my phone (to a certain degree), but that's primarily because I don't do much video watching on my phone; I have the most basic data plan and rarely come close to exceeding it.
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/31/2014 | 11:08:22 PM
Re: Watching what?
6am-10am is peak time for commuting to work -- not to mention going to the gym before work.  Tons of people watch videos (Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, etc.) on their phone on the subway or the bus, or on the treadmill.
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/31/2014 | 10:06:41 PM
Re: Watching what?
Good Morning America!
DOShea
50%
50%
DOShea,
User Rank: Blogger
3/31/2014 | 10:00:21 PM
Watching what?
Who is watching video on their mobile phones between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m., and what are they watching?
Liz Greenberg
50%
50%
Liz Greenberg,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/31/2014 | 9:24:57 PM
Re: Which devices?
I agree with you Sarah but I think that the average user doesn't really distinguish between the capabilities of WiFi versus the mobile network (4G, LTE, etc) and therefore just thinks that it is bad reception.  Most people ask me "What is the difference between WiFi and Cellular?  Aren't they the same?"  So it will be interesting to see what happens over the next 12 months with more LTE and WiFi but also what the carriers will do to degrade the experience based on trying to meter Netflix and the like!
TaraSeals
50%
50%
TaraSeals,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/31/2014 | 7:01:19 PM
Re: Which devices?
I know-- it's really interesting. I personally think that the wireless experience is getting so much better with 4G that the average consumer's expectations are improving overall.
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
3/31/2014 | 6:22:59 PM
Re: Which devices?
I am surprised by that study findings. I have different expectations for my WiFi network versus LTE versus 3G versus cable. I guess improving technologies mean that people no longer excuse certain networks. Might be time to stop dumbing down the multiscreen viewing experience.
TaraSeals
50%
50%
TaraSeals,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/31/2014 | 5:53:11 PM
Re: Which devices?
I agree that it's totally unacceptable on the TV considering how much cable bills are--and I would guess that most people agree.

But a survey from Parks Associates has found that consumers expect the same TV user experience throughout their home, regardless of whether the service is offered over the top (OTT), a managed terrestrial operator network, satellite or other delivery mechanism. That study interestingly found that expectations also remain the same regardless of the receiving device, including set-top box or connected CE device.

The connected home research further found that users want all of the bells and whistles of a traditional pay-TV service within the user interface for OTT.

"While some operators might see OTT delivery or use on a connected CE device as a way to offer a slimmed-down version of their user interface, consumers still expect the full-feature service and interface experience regardless of how it is delivered to the TV," said Brett Sappington, director of research at Parks Associates.

So...a possible differentiation point?
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
From The Founder
Against the odds, Huawei is growing its telecoms networking equipment business in the US -- that should be ringing some alarm bells for domestic vendors.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Jeff Miller, ActiveVideo

8|28|15   |   19:05   |   (0) comments


Jeff Miller, President and CEO of ActiveVideo, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the impact of virtualization on the TV and video distribution market.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Vodafone: Mobile Money Is About Customer Trust

8|27|15   |   06.36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading spoke with Vodafone's Ian Ravenscroft about the unique responsibilities and opportunities facing operators handling customers' financial transactions over the network.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Palo Alto Networks on Expanding in the Carrier/Service Provider Market

8|26|15   |   07:54   |   (0) comments


Alfred Lee from Palo Alto Networks tells Steve Saunders about their new chassis-based system, the PA-7080, and how it can benefit service providers compared to legacy firewalls.
LRTV Custom TV
Global Services Forum Preview

8|25|15   |   02:36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders talks about Huawei's upcoming Global Services Forum with the help of Heavy Reading's Patrick Donegan and Teresa Mastrangelo.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Infoblox on DNS Threat Index

8|19|15   |   04:39   |   (0) comments


Dilip Pillaipakam from Infoblox talks to Steve Saunders about his company's core network services.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Ihab Tarazi, Equinix

8|14|15   |   20:18   |   (1) comment


Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the dramatic changes in the data center, cloud and interconnect markets and discusses the impact of SDN and NFV in the coming years.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
The Netformx Ecosystem

8|14|15   |   09:39   |   (1) comment


Ittai Bareket, CEO of Netformx, talks with Steve Saunders about the Netformx Ecosystem, which employs cutting-edge prescriptive analytics to help solution providers maximize profits.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Versa Networks on Leveraging VNFs

8|12|15   |   07:37   |   (0) comments


Kumar Mehta, founder and CEO of stealth mode startup Versa Networks, talks with Steve Saunders about how providers can best leverage virtualized network functions (VNFs).
LRTV Custom TV
Transforming the Network Through OPNFV

8|5|15   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Sandra Rivera, VP Data Center Group; GM Network Platforms Group, Intel Corporation, on OPNFV Arno and how the industry is coming together to accelerate the deployment of NFV and transform the network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei ONS Product Demo

8|3|15   |   6:01   |   (0) comments


Huawei shows at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara how its SDN and NFV solutions embrace openness.
LRTV Custom TV
End-User or Enterprise Benefits to the New IP

7|30|15   |   04:27   |   (1) comment


Andrew Coward discusses what the New IP means to end users or enterprise customers. He explains compelling reasons, including how every customer can get their own network, from the transformation to the New IP.
LRTV Custom TV
Network Visibility & the New IP

7|30|15   |   02:23   |   (0) comments


Mukund Srigopal provides an explanation of what network visibility is and how it is essential as service providers transition to the New IP. In addition, the importance of the network packet broker is discussed.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Cisco's cloud and virtualization portfolio can increase business agility and innovation by building a more flexible network architecture.
Hot Topics
Verizon Hums a Driving Tune
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/26/2015
Gogo Approved to Speed Up In-Flight WiFi
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/24/2015
Could Market Volatility Hurt Tech IPOs?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/24/2015
Sprint's Claure: '3 to 5 Years' to Turnaround
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/25/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Jeff Miller, President and CEO of ActiveVideo, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the impact of virtualization on the TV and video distribution market.
Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about data center, cloud and the impact of virtualization in the coming years.
Cats with Phones
Cats Are a Smartphone's Best Friend Click Here
Whoever said cats didn't live to please their humans?