The media landscape has evolved dramatically in recent years. Not only has there been a shift in what media we see, how we see it, and who provides it, but media services and the content they facilitate have become thoroughly intertwined with consumers’ means of communication as well.

Don’t Outdate – Update

These shifting trends and the technological innovations that catalyse them have opened a whole new world of opportunities for media providers and telcos alike. But as with any industry undergoing rapid revolution, it can be difficult for companies to keep up, or know what changes they need to make to meet the moment – particularly for traditional providers and legacy players, whose operations are deeply ingrained in longstanding practices that can easily become outdated more quickly than they can be updated.

Shuki Eytan Headshot 3x2

Shuki Eytan, General Manager, Media and Telecom, Kaltura

As attention spans shorten and viewer eyeballs get pulled in increasing directions, telcos and media providers must follow the undulating trends and seek solutions that enable them to reach new markets through new content channels and increase their revenue footprint beyond standard monetisation capabilities.

Here are some of the key trends that the video cloud and media industry can expect to see next.

Streams, Games and the Social Dilemma

A key paradigm shift in the media landscape has been the transition from live TV broadcasting and scheduled entertainment to video on demand (VOD) and streaming.

Compounding this friction is the fact that TV companies must not only compete with international streaming and VOD conglomerates like Netflix or Amazon, but they must account for the eyeballs lost to social media and gaming.

The result of this will be an uptick in acquisitions of social media platforms, streaming services, and mobile gaming providers – both by tech giants and old-media conglomerates – as a means to remain relevant, compete most effectively in the spaces that are pulling viewership away, and drive multichannel revenue.

SaaS and Cloud Integration Driving TV Business Value

Adopting third-party SaaS solutions or partnering with video cloud providers gives traditional media companies and telcos a much needed edge in keeping up with ongoing trends and staying competitive amid rapid industry evolution.

For starters, SaaS and cloud platforms afford an even greater depth of hyperconnectivity. They can connect the services of both media providers and telcos to myriad personal devices, as well as to the troves of personalisation data to be gleaned from the cloud. As such, third-party solutions can provide newly minted media-telco conglomerates with better monitoring capabilities and greater end-to-end monetisation opportunities. In doing so, telco and media companies will gain even more from their subscribers – more viewership as well as more unique preference data – and can personalise their offerings, cater promotions and suggestions accordingly, and ultimately reduce churn.

This hyperconnectivity is key in supporting yet another trend gaining momentum in the media landscape – “super aggregation,” which allows for the aggregation of even more content from even more providers in one centralised location, regardless of whether the content providers are linked. Consider the abilities of smart TV devices or streaming-integrated subscriptions through a TV company or telco. By making numerous VOD options – Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, even YouTube – available through a single holistic platform, viewers can search for content they want, across platforms, instantly and seamlessly.

Partnering with third party SaaS and cloud providers also offloads much of the technical burden that in-house cloud infrastructure might otherwise require. These external providers are prepared to handle the operational capabilities and troubleshooting needs that might otherwise steal precious time and attention from internal IT teams.

Consolidation of Telecommunication and Media Services Under Multinational Brands

Telecommunication services and media providers have always worked alongside one another, yet their operations were, understandably, siloed. However, the prevalence of smart personal devices, the ubiquity of social media, and the self-sufficient, instant gratification nature of streaming services have blurred these lines – and large players are leaning in.

The consolidation of telco and media services under multinational brands ensures that vendors, particularly those with a multinational reach, can extract large-scale revenue benefits. Both sides have valuable resources to offer the other: Telcos share the benefits of their preexisting users, network connectivity, and troves of revenue-generating features; Media companies in turn bring additional users, the user-facing capabilities to bolster marketing and personalisation efforts, and the content that brings viewers to the table in the first place.

By combining forces in a consolidated platform or service, media companies will benefit by leveraging the digital connectivity that telcos facilitate, while telcos will see their back-end services come to the fore alongside the media that viewers consume.

Break Barriers, Not the Bank

Ongoing trends point to a future media industry dominated by consolidation and strategic partnerships. Such partnerships should be forged with the goal of crossing global barriers, tapping into multichannel content capabilities, and staying competitive amid the noisy new-media landscape. In doing so, media companies and telcos alike stand to reduce churn and drive revenue.

By investing in the proper infrastructure, whether through mergers and acquisitions or adopting third party solutions, media companies and telcos can sidestep hefty IT costs without compromising the effectiveness of their cloud platforms and SaaS integrations. Instead, they can spend their time on more pressing tasks that are more in line with the core of their company, and can focus on what really matters – bringing a seamless digital media and communication experience to their users.