What was the last series you binge-watched on Netlfix or Prime Video?
Never mind! But if you have a subscription to one of these two platforms, you definitely know what an OTT application/platform is!
Now that you’re here, it’s clear that you want to know more about OTT apps, OTT software development and even build an OTT application for your own business!
So, in this read, we’ve come up with everything you could possibly look for!
We would have continued saying what the read is about but thought it would be better if you find it yourselves
Sit back tight! Because this gets interesting better than a Netflix series – well, we hope that it does!
What are OTT Applications?
OTT applications (Over-the-top) are sophisticated video streaming platform that lets you view shows to your choice.
OTT applications, in general, have content like movies, TV series, live events and more. And users can view these on both their desktops and handsets. Oops! We did miss out on Smart TVs. Add that to the list, will you?
All one needs to have is a stable internet connection and subscription plan. Speaking of subscriptions, OTT platforms allow users to opt for monthly or quarterly or annual subscriptions.
The OTT subscription trend is on the rise because of the extreme comfort – people can watch videos from the comfort of their homes. Also, since the videos are readily available to play, people are switching from the traditional cable connections to OTT platforms!
Some of the most popular OTT applications today are,
- Prime Video
- Disney+ Hotstar
- Shudder and more.
We’re done here! Now that you know what an OTT application is, let’s head to the next part!
OTT Platform Market Share & Statistics
The OTT platform market has witnessed exponential growth, especially since the beginning of 2020. Popular OTT video platforms have witnessed significant increase in both revenue and usage. Here are some of the statistics we’ve pulled out for you!
- The OTT market was valued at an approximate $120 billion and is estimated to reach $1,039 billion by the year 2027.
- Reports state that over 230 million people in the USA have at least one video streaming application. This is somewhat close to 70% of the population.
- Another study revealed that as of now, Netflix is the biggest OTT services provider in the world. The Netflix OTT application has more than 150 million paid subscribers now.
- As of March 2021, Prime Video has more than 150 million subscribers. This is an approximate 50% increase from 2017.
- As of July 2021, Disney+ Hotstar has more than 300 million users and 38 million paid subscribers.
If that’s not enough for you, here’s something more!
Shudder was started in the year 2015 by AMC Networks. The platform focuses mainly on horror content. Shudder recently announced that it has more than one million members on the platform. That’s pretty huge growth in a short period!
All these stats only prove how beneficial starting an OTT platform business is now! Now that we’re done with the statistics part, let’s move on to the next part of the read!
What Type of OTT Applications Can You Build?
A pretty straightforward answer! With the current day needs, you can and must build different kinds of OTT applications. This is because the more accessible your OTT video platform and content is to users, the better will the be the engagement rate and new user count onboard.
The most common types of OTT applications are being listed below,
Mobile OTT Apps: Probably the most important one if you want your OTT platform business to thrive. Almost all OTT services today have a mobile application. You get readily built OTT mobile apps, which makes the task easy for you!
Here’s Netflix from both the Playstore and App Store.
We did want to take screenshots of other apps as well but thought we’d stop with this!
Web OTT Apps: Next to Mobile OTT apps, you should have a web presence. Usually, your website is going to act as your web application. You can simply log in, stream what you want online – as simple as said!
Desktop OTT Apps: Some people hate opening their browser every time they want to watch something. A desktop OTT app should get the job done! Netflix, Prime Video and popular OTT services have this feature!
Apart from this, you can also come up with Smart TV apps. Since Smart TVs work on the Android model, you don’t have to worry too much!
What Features Your OTT Applications Should Have?
OTT software development can be quite a tricky thing. You have to make sure that your OTT application has the necessary features to meet the industry standards!
Below, we’ve mentioned some of the primary features your OTT application should have!
- Social Login Feature
The login/registration gateway is the first thing your platform users should have. Allowing a social login feature saves time and allows users to log in to the platform with one single click.
- Push Notifications
Push Notifications are one thing that’s going to make users come back for more. You should be able to let your users know about the latest releases, upcoming movies and more.
Users would hate to search for the same thing repeatedly, which is why a wishlist is mandatory for your OTT application. A wishlist would help your users stay more engaged on the platform.
- Search Options
Platform users should be able to find what they are looking for. Make sure your OTT application has the search feature quite sophisticated. Results should be relevant and should appear in the blink of an eye.
- Subscription Model
This is one of the monetization features your OTT application should be having. Your users should be able to subscribe to available subscription plans. This helps you to earn revenue and increase your subscriber base.
- Pay-Per-View Model
This is another super useful monetization feature. Not all your platform users would want to opt-in for a subscription model. Some don’t use OTT services very often. Such users would not hesitate to pay and watch the latest releases. Since it’s a one-time payment and there aren’t any subscriptions, people don’t mind paying the one-time bucks.
This helps you bring in more revenue!
- Banner Videos
Banner videos are known to gather a lot of attention when a user comes to visit your OTT platform. Prime Video is a perfect example of this. They display the latest releases using a carousel format banner.
This can also be an ideal monetization opportunity for you!
The above-mentioned features are the mandatory ones your platform should have at the beginning. Later, you can even add a couple of nice to have features onboard depending on how your OTT platform is performing.
Now that we know the basic features your OTT application should have, let’s look at the OTT platform monetization features.
Different Types of OTT Application Monetization Models
Any business, be it offline or online, it all comes down to the monetization models! Well, that’s natural!
An OTT streaming service is one of the profitable businesses out there, thanks to its multiple monetization methods!
We already saw this in the above section but here, we’re going a bit in-depth.
1. Subscription Payment Model
Your users should opt for a monthly subscription plan to access, view and download content on their devices.
The subscription process can be auto-renewed or set to manual payment by the user. It’s better if you come up with multiple subscription plans on your platform. This gives the users multiple options to choose from and they end up going with one from the lot for sure.
The below screenshot shows the subscription plans of Netflix in the US region,
Netflix has got three subscription plans for the US region. Whereas when it comes to India, Netflix has four subscription plans – a dedicated mobile-only view plan!
2. Pay-Per-View Model
Like we already mentioned, the pay-per-view model is where your platform users pay to view a specific title on your platform.
This goes well for users who do not want to opt-in for a subscription plan or who do not often watch movies.
Flexibility is the key to grow any business and having a pay-per-view model gives you the edge in attracting the audience to your OTT platform.
3. The Hybrid Model
Yes! It’s exactly what you think!
The hybrid model is a combination of both the subscription and the pay-per-view model. Having a combination of both on the same platform allows you to attract both kinds of audiences.
Also, you can use the pay-per-view model to display exclusive live stream shows/latest releases on the platform.
Even the users who have a subscription plan should pay to view the exclusive content – additional revenue!
Apart from this, you can also display ads on banners or in between video content.
Those are the popular OTT platform monetization strategies you should consider having on your OTT application at the beginning.
So, let’s get to the OTT software development part!
How to Build an OTT Application?
Like we already mentioned, OTT software development can be tricky but it all depends on the approach you to choose to go with!
We’ve come up with the two most common ways to build an OTT application here!
1. Hire Developers to Built Your OTT Application
This has been the go-to method for building OTT applications to date. But it does come with its own complications!
To build an OTT application from scratch using developers takes a lot of time and money. And by building from scratch, we mean the entire process!
Developers have to build features like,
- Built-in Video Player
- Payment Gateways
- Search & Filter Options
- Registration Gateway
- Monetization Models
- User Profile
- Analytics Dashboard
- Watchlist & User Recommendations
- Banner Videos
- Push Notifications and more.
All the above-mentioned features should be built from scratch and this takes a minimum of 3 – 6 months if you have in-house developers. If you’re planning to outsource the project, it could take even more time.
Now, for the other method. Trust us, you’re going to love this!
2. Using Custom Solution to Build an OTT Application
When compared with the previous solution, this method helps you save huge time and money.
Today, hundreds of custom OTT application scripts let you build OTT streaming services like Netflix and Prime video with ease.
Since these solutions are already packed with features you need to run an OTT platform, you should simply install the script on your server and get on with it.
The advantage of using OTT application scripts is that you don’t have to hire developers or outsource your project. Once the basics are set and your OTT platform is live, you simply have to upload videos regularly and manage your platform users.
Speaking of OTT scripts, here’s one such solution!
StreamView is a white-label OTT streaming solution that lets you create an OTT platform with ease.
You can create websites like Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+ Hostar with ease. The platform comes with all the above-mentioned features and allows high room for customization.
Since you get lifetime access to the source code, you can further customize the platform to add additional features or tweak the platform to suit your needs.
The steps to launching your OTT platform are pretty simple with StreamView.
Step 1: The first step to launch your OTT platform is to buy a domain.
Step 2: Once you’ve bought a domain, choose a hosting provider that you find appropriate.
Step 3: When purchased a domain and a hosting provider, buy the StreamView OTT application script and install it on the server.
Step 4: Customize the script to suit your needs. Add additional features if you want or tweak the platform to make it look better.
Step 5: When all the customization is done, it’s time you start uploading videos, create subscription plans, set payment gateways and launch your OTT platform.
So, that’s how you create an OTT application for your business with ease.
Now, to the final part of the read – OTT video app development cost!
Cost to Develop Your OTT Video Application
Since we saw two methods in this read, it’s only fair to let you know the development costs of both the approaches.
The first method where you hire developers to build your OTT application costs you approximately $30,000 to $50,000. It might even cost more depending on the features and the people you hire, especially if you’re hiring developers from North America. The time taken to build one such OTT application is 3 – 6 months.
As for the second approach where you use OTT application script, it’s going to cost you an approximate $2000 – $3000.
The time taken to build an OTT video platform using an OTT script is 3 – 4 weeks.
So, yes! That’s pretty much about OTT software development! We’ll wrap this read with a positive note!
Final Few Words
Running an OTT video platform is one of the best ways to earn money today. With the OTT market size expected to grow multiple folds in the coming years, there’s no better time to start an OTT streaming business!
You’ve got everything you need to start a OTT streaming platform as well! We see no reason why you should wait anymore!
Frequently Answered Questions
- How to Build an OTT Video Platform?
An OTT video platform can be built using two methods,
- Build it from scratch
- Using custom OTT application scripts.
- How Does OTT Platform Work?
An OTT platform streams popular content like movies, web series, documentaries and more. On ther other hand, users can opt-in for a subscription plan and consume content they wish to.
- How Do OTT Platforms Make Money?
OTT platforms make money using the monetization models like,
- Subscription Model
- Pay-per-view Model
- Hybrid Mode
- Where Do Ads Come Up in OTT Platforms?
Generally, ads are displayed in banners or in between the video content. Ads are also an effective way to earn money when you run an OTT platform business.