An over-the-top (OTT) media service is a streaming media service offered on to viewers via the net. The OTT bypasses cable, broadcast, and satellite television platforms, the businesses that historically act as a controller or distributor of such content. OTT platforms were widely popular in 2020 as it promised to entertain the customers when they needed it during lockdown, which had restrained the people movement and most of the other entertainment channels were facing the hardship due to lockdown. These time most of the apps plunged into the wagon but some gained more and some a little less.
Riding on top of the massive surge in demand during the lockdown and growing mobile internet connectivity, India has emerged as the world’ fastest growing OTT market; it is expected to grow at nearly 30% CAGR over next five years. In terms of revenue it is likely to exceed USD 3 billion during the period.
No-doubt the content in OTT is the biggest driver for attracting customers. At the same time user experience is equally important. User experience ensures the loyalty of the customers towards a particular platform so that they can come again and again to the same platform for viewing their favourite show, movies and other content.
With the rise in OTT popularity, there are many who believe that digital TV may replace satellite TV completely. In order for that to happen, user experience on OTT platforms will need to match that of the satellite TV. Users will need seamless streaming experience and the OTT players will need to be more responsive. Besides, all these features will need to translate into customer satisfaction, which will lead to high recommendation (advocacy) and disposition.
To check how each of the apps was performing on the rich user experience front, Voice&Data commissioned India’s first study to CMR and Mozark to conduct a comprehensive test to evaluate the performance of OTT Apps in the country using the Synthetic Experience Monitoring (SEM) solution. To get a clear understanding CMR and Mozark also conducted a primary survey to capture customers feedback for Airtel Xtreme, Disney+Hotstar, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, SonyLIV, Voot, YouTube, and Zee5.
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The joint study used Mozark’s industry-first SEM solution that uses completely non-intrusive methods to measure the user experience. Tests were performed on low-end and high-end smartphones connected to real telco networks (Airtel, Jio, and Vodafone-Idea). The company’s machine learning (ML)-driven platform analyzes automation, OS, and network logs, along with video stream analysis to derive these KPIs. The solution helps test how the apps are performing in real user conditions and how they are perceived by the customers.
The values on each of the above parameters were converted into a four-point scale. The application quality index (AQI) was derived by aggregating the average scores of responsive index and streaming index. Overall, three major data logs are analyzed to build the AQI.
• Automation logs that provide an understanding of onfield app experience
• Device logs, which provide details on on-device resource performance
• Network logs that provide app to backend diagnostics
Emotional Quotient: Emotional quotient describes the emotional attachment of the users towards the apps. This was measured using the following two parameters.
Advocacy: This depicts the willingness of users to recommend the brands to peers. This was measured in 10 point scale in which 10 represents ‘highly recommend’ and one (1) represents ‘not at all recommend’.
Disposition: This depicts the disposition of users towards brands. This was measured on a seven-point scale in which seven (7) represents highest disposition and one (1) represents lowest disposition as described in different terms – insist, prefer, intend, accept, no opinion, unaware, and reject.
Performance of OTT apps on AQI
Responsive experience: Amazon Prime Video is the most responsive app followed by YouTube, Airtel Xstream and Zee5. Responsiveness score of Amazon Prime Video is 22% higher than second most responsive app, YouTube. However, the responsiveness of apps in India fall short of global average scores which are closer to 3.
Streaming experience: In the streaming index, YouTube ranks highest followed by SonyLIV, Netflix and Disney+Hotstar. Score of YouTube is 10% higher than that of next best streaming app SonyLiv. The study reveals that global players dominate streaming performance over local players.
AQI score: Benchmarking OTT’s AQI
While combining responsive index and streaming index, YouTube scores highest closely followed by Amazon Prime Video. The research indicates that AQI of YouTube is 13% higher than Netflix, which came third, over the past one year.
It was also observed that global apps performed better than their local peers like Voot and Zee5, perhaps because of their ownership of the content delivery infrastructure that allows them to depend less on third party integrations and manage existing integrations more efficiently.
Performance of OTT apps on emotional quotient
Advocacy index: YouTube has highest recommendation score closely followed by Amazon Prime Video. Recommendation scores of Netflix and Disney+Hotstar are almost same, bringing them both at the third rank. The study reveals that even on this parameter, global apps perform better than their local peers.
Amazon Prime Video has highest disposition score followed by Netflix. YouTube and Disney+Hotstar are ranked at third and fourth position respectively.
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