OTT video is very different to traditional TV broadcasting. The way this content is produced, distributed and consumed varies greatly, and, therefore, so do the broadcaster’s IT requirements. OTT video providers need to consider whether they will bear the full responsibility of the OTT broadcast process themselves, or outsource the operations to a third-party Managed Service Provider (MSP). There are pros and cons to both options, depending on the nature of your business. That said, an increasing number of OTT video providers are choosing to outsource their OTT requirements to an MSP. Let’s take a look at why this is the case.
Providers need to follow three main steps to keep OTT services in-house: production, distribution and consumption
Production covers the receiving, encoding, encryption and storage of the signal. With OTT video, you’ll be broadcasting to viewers across many devices and networks, and there will be huge differences in the speed and availability of the networks to which you broadcast.
Distribution involves sending video data through Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) to the devices on which the content is viewed. This is more complex than TV broadcasting, as data loads need to be balanced.
In the final step, consumption, you need to consider how your viewers will receive and use the signal transmitted. This includes the device and platform used to view your content. Each app within a device will need its own approach to distribution and consumption.
Does your business have the resources to perform all the processes involved in delivering content online?
Your priority as an OTT video provider is to distribute content as efficiently and consistently as possible, taking into account the requirements outlined above. Do you have the in-house capabilities (not to mention, budget) to do this? If not, you’ve got a strong case for enlisting an MSP to manage your OTT content production, distribution and consumption. Using a third party allows for greater flexibility, reduced costs and improved customer service.
Outsourcing to an MSP allows your business to remain agile in the face of unpredictable demand for your content
In an age when demand for your OTT media can triple in the space of days, being able to rapidly scale up or down in response to the market is vital to avoid unnecessary pressure on your IT department. Because an MSP relies on economies of scale when managing the production, distribution and consumption involved in OTT video, they can offer extra bandwidth or capacity at a much lower cost than increasing storage space in-house. Outsourcing OTT video to an MSP also allows you to deliver new products to market faster, as your service provider has the infrastructure and efficiencies required to do so.
Without an internal IT team dedicated to OTT content, you’ll significantly reduce running costs and TCO
Managing OTT services in-house requires an IT team dedicated to the production, distribution and consumption of your content. These employees need upskilling, management and salaries, all of which drain resources away from content distribution and increase Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). By outsourcing to an MSP, you’ll no longer need an internal IT team. Instead, you’ll have access to a team of OTT video experts, whose services you pay for as and when you need them.
Managing all the broadcast platforms and apps through which your content is viewed is a huge task for an internal IT team
For viewers to watch your content, you need to choose the right broadcast platforms. These platforms, such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Apple TV, are accessed through a variety of apps and devices. To maintain a consistent service, you need the skill and capacity to manage each platform and app for different devices. This creates a huge workload for an in-house IT team. An MSP, however, has the skill and resources to do this with ease, ensuring that your content never dips and your internal IT department doesn’t have to deal with downtime.
The case for outsourcing OTT services is strong. However, If you’d like more information to help you decide whether in-house or outsourced management of OTT services is best for your business, download the guide: