Enterprises have been migrating toward more video communication in recent years. However the global pandemic forced many to accelerate their digital transformation initiatives in order to effectively stay connected with stakeholders including employees, customers, partners and vendors, among others, making video an essential communications component for maintaining business continuity and sailing through the crisis. Industry pundits believe that the trend is here to stay with new and emerging digital technologies driving this transformation.
In an exclusive interaction with CXOToday, Namita Dhallan, who leads product management, engineering, and operations functions at Brightcove, a cloud-based video technology platform, sheds light on the massive growth of video technologies, current trends and the need for businesses to develop and implement a sound video strategy to succeed in the post pandemic world. Excerpts.
How has the pandemic accelerated the pace of video technology transformation?
The global stay-at-home orders implemented during the pandemic and the current work from home or hybrid approach to work have all revealed and solidified the need for video to keep people connected. While the video space has steadily grown since the advent of the internet age, the last 2 years really pushed the need for video, and the evolution of how we use video.
What seemed like overnight, video became essential. It was essential for workplaces to continue business, family and friends to stay connected, and for entertainment. At Brightcove, we know video as the most compelling medium to connect, inform, engage, communicate, educate, entertain and so much more. The pandemic accelerated the adoption of video as a key communication mechanism and enabled the rest of the world to witness the importance of video.
What are the latest trends in video technology?
There are new and emerging trends all the time as the space is moving forward quickly. Right now, the big trends are machine learning, flexible monetization models for OTT services, and blockbuster movie releases on OTT services rather than in movie theatres.
You’ll hear more about machine learning in regards to video as the industry is really digging in and seeing its benefits. Using data, already on your platform, to gain deeper insights that help to deliver a better, more personalized user experience is paramount now.
These insights are foundational to another growing trend in video especially with OTT platforms – providing flexible monetization models to entice multiple audiences. Based on insights – OTT platforms can figure out the various forms of monetization they can adopt such as AVOD, SVOD, and PPV, or a combination, to reach the largest audience, while still seeing a high return on investment.
Due to the pandemic and a lot of movie theaters closing down, we saw blockbuster films released on streaming services rather than hold the premiere until consumers go back into theaters. This will be the future of movie premieres, and eventually, we will see major premieres on OTT services and in theaters together. This hybrid trend will also carry over into the event industry. While we will see in person events return, most events will have a virtual component making it a hybrid experience for attendees.
How has video technology adoption made a difference in India in comparison to other parts of the globe?
Without a doubt, the adoption of video technology has made a huge difference in India. Coupled with the rising adoption of smartphone users, which is predicted to be over 820 million smartphone users by 2030, the growth of video in the country is skyrocketing. More access to smartphones in India also means more people have access to video streaming platforms. Global OTT players are targeting India as a hot market to break into, and are doing so by partnering with local content owners to deliver locally relevant content of interest in addition to global content. At the same time, local players are emerging to compete with global services. The OTT market in India is expected to reach $12.5 billion by 2030.
What are Brightcove’s product offerings and tech innovations for businesses in India? What is the company’s hiring process?
In India, Brightcove recognizes that local content owners and providers will not be forced out by the big global OTT players that are taking the opportunity to step into this lucrative market. In order to help local OTT players succeed, we recommend our Brightcove Beacon solution. Brightcove Beacon is our own OTT platform that local content owners and providers can leverage to launch their own OTT services. With Brightcove Beacon, we handle the technology, while our customers focus on securing the content. Brightcove Beacon has the ability to help deliver content as wide as possible. This is especially important in a country like India where the demographic segmentation is so vast based on language alone all the way down to the preferred device of choice. Brightcove Beacon also provides flexible monetization models to optimize its audience reach. Staying ahead of the curve is paramount for Brightcove and this is not just for our technology. We need dedicated and passionate employees to help us build our next innovative solution.
How is cloud technology driving better video quality?
The benefits of using cloud technology in the video workflow include more flexibility, cost savings, and better delivery. Imagine an OTT platform that is just starting out, leveraging cloud technology will help streamline costs by having a non-physical infrastructure. As they start to grow in audience and content, cloud infrastructure provides the flexibility for the platform to seamlessly scale its operations. Beyond that, it allows for new innovations, solutions or products to be added into their mix.
What are the challenges and innovations in cloud-based video technology?
Some of the innovations of cloud-based video technology include applying machine learning to help provide essential analytics for greater and in-depth insights for the business to leverage. One of the innovations that Brightcove recently introduced is Brightcove China Delivery. With Brightcove China Delivery, content owners can use a simple checkbox interface to start distributing video in China and analyze its performance. Another early concerns with cloud-based video technology especially when it comes down to streaming is latency. However, with the introduction of 5G, this is an issue that we should be seeing less of as 5G connectivity starts to become the norm.
How can companies overcome challenges associated with security, awareness, integration etc. when it comes to cloud video platform adoption?
Video delivery must be secure; this is table stakes in today’s world. Brightcove offers solutions such as Brightcove Playback Restrictions where we ensure security protocols such as proxy restrictions and mid-stream rights checks. We are adamant that we help customers deliver their video securely so that their content is not only protected but so is their return on video investment.
How do you see the future of video technology overall?
The reign of video has only begun and it will continue to dominate. In most aspects, video has become the medium of choice for communication, information delivery and entertainment. We will continue to see video in our everyday lives, including for entertainment and work, and staying connected with family and friends. While we will see a small shift back to in person events, entertainment, and work, video will continue to be a main component. Over the past year and a half, we have created a more connected world through video, and that will only continue to grow.