Industry Blog

Is Facebook video poised to overtake YouTube? – The mobile video crown is up for grabs

Mobile Video Index

Is Facebook video poised to overtake YouTube? It may be hard to believe, but that just might be the case, at least in terms of mobile video. In fact, in some markets, Facebook video already has surpassed YouTube. This is just one of the surprising trends in subscriber behavior that we uncovered among the latest findings from our Mobile Video Index (MVI). The MVI research series compiles data aggregated from live operator deployments worldwide to identify important trends impacting mobile networks, in order to guide operators in strategic network planning.

The latest MVI report also sheds some light on how much time subscribers spend watching the average video on their mobile devices. This is important because while video playback time has increased considerably, average buffering times remain stubbornly high at more than 7 seconds. This has significant repercussions for subscriber Quality of Experience (QoE), as research commissioned for the MVI shows that subscribers will only put up with about 6 seconds of buffering before giving up in frustration, blaming their network operators instead of the OTT content provider.

The resulting challenge to manage QoE – and thereby reduce churn – is becoming even greater, given that many OTT video services are now offering HD content for mobile devices, requiring 3-4 times more bandwidth than standard video. Moreover, as levels of encrypted traffic continue to soar, mobile operators struggle to manage traffic they can’t see as it flows across their networks. The challenge to drive data revenues while managing QoE has never been greater.

What do subscribers really want?

To help answer this crucial question, the latest MVI includes data about subscriber habits and preferences from an independent consumer survey of 3,000 subscribers. Today’s consumers enjoy video streaming and other entertainment options like never before. Hundreds of thousands of TV shows and videos are accessible with just a few clicks and swipes. What are subscribers actually doing with mobile video? And how much patience do they have for poor quality?

Additionally, we’ve included in the MVI an exclusive article from industry analyst Gorkem Yigit of Analysys Mason. Mobile video represents a significant opportunity for mobile operators to increase revenue and improve retention, yet many smartphone users are hesitant to stream video because of concerns about price and data allowances. Gorkem outlines examples of how pricing can be used to encourage subscribers to switch from WiFi to mobile service for content consumption.

Download the latest Mobile Video Index report to arm yourself with the information you need to prepare your network for the most critical challenges posed by real trends in subscriber behavior. It goes without saying that subscribers represent the mobile operator’s most valuable asset. Learn how to take advantage of valuable monetization opportunities and contain network costs. There is money on the table… don’t leave it there for your competition!