Mobile to become main engine for online video consumption by end of 2016 | Mobile | News | Rapid TV News
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Online video has boomed over the last two years or so but 2016 will be the year when mobile becomes its dominant platform for consumption, if not business, says advertising firm Zenith Optimedia.

EE TV record to go 31 MarchAccording to Zenith’s Online Video Forecasts 2016, global consumers around the world will spend an average of 19.7 minutes a day viewing online videos on their mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, compared with 16.0 minutes on fixed devices including desktop computers and smart TV sets. This represents a 39% leap for mobile on 2015 figures, when 14.2 minutes were spent viewing mobile video. The research also suggests that fixed video consumption will be static in 2016, reflecting, says Zenith, higher viewing on smart TVs counterbalanced by the viewing lost from desktops to smartphones and tablets.

The ad firm forecasts that mobile video consumption will grow 33% in 2017 and 27% in 2018, to reach 33.4 minutes a day. Mobile devices will account for 64% of all online video consumption in 2018. Fixed video consumption will grow 13% in 2017 and 3% in 2018 to reach 18.7 minutes as smart TV viewing becomes more common.

Looking at the key drivers, Zenith believes that the quality of devices is boosting usage mobile video consumption, particularly low-cost devices in lower-income countries. Other key development parameters include the development of better mobile displays; and the spread of high-speed data connections, particularly 4G.

There is huge tangible result to this growth. Zenith calculates that advertisers spent US$17.5bn on online video ads in 2015, up from $13.4bn in 2014. Online video ad-spend is set to grow at an average rate of 19.8% a year, reaching $30.1bn in 2018. This will increase online video’s share of digital display ad-spend to 31.3%, up from 26.7% in 2015. Online video (as well as social media) is rapidly taking market share from traditional banners, which are less effective and more disliked by consumers, particularly on mobile devices.

The company also stresses that even though most online video consumption is mobile, the majority of expenditure on online video advertising goes to fixed devices, and will continue to do so in 2017. It says that video ads are more engaging and effective on larger screens, so advertisers will continue to pay a substantial premium for fixed video ads. Zenith also estimates that fixed video ads will account for just over two-thirds of all online video advertising in 2016, down from 75% a year ago. The company also observes that it will not be until 2018 that it expects mobile advertising to equal fixed.

“The spread of mobile devices and high-speed connections means consumers will have online video content at their fingertips throughout the day,” commented Jonathan Barnard, head of forecasting at Zenith. “This creates new opportunities for advertisers to communicate with consumers, using online video ads to combine the brand-building power of audio-visual advertising with pin-point targeting and personalisation.”