LATAM pay-TV execs strike positive note on OTT | Media Analysis | Business
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The onset of over-the-top networks has struck feat into markets in the US and Europe but broadcast professionals in Latin America are positively disposed to more OTT according to research from NAGRA and in partnership with MTM.
Nagra payTVIF 22June2019
However the survey of senior executives representing leading pay-TV providers, broadcasters, OTT services and rights holders in the region showed that the majority of executives believe that pay-TV service providers will have to innovate their product pricing and packaging to retain and attract new customers.

The Latin American edition of the 2019 Pay-TV Innovation Forum research found that Latin American pay-TV executives are more optimistic than their global peers about the impact of OTT services on the pay-TV industry: 83% of participants surveyed believe that the shift to OTT delivery will have a positive impact on their business compared to 70% of executives globally.

Although linear TV is expected to remain an important component of pay-TV offerings due to the lower levels of broadband connectivity in the region, Latin American executives saw many new opportunities for ‘super-aggregation’ models to offer a range of content and services via a single subscription. Almost three-quarters of pay-TV executives in Latin America agree that ‘super-aggregator’ pay-TV platforms will emerge over the next five years, attracting a significant proportion of customers that pay for video content.

One of the key aspects of the region is its passion for sports, especially football and an overwhelming majority of executives surveyed (93%) believe that sports OTT services would be valuable additions to pay-TV bundles. While NAGRA and MTM noted that no paid-for standalone sports OTT services have reached significant scale in the region to date, the survey showed that Latin American pay-TV executives were the most positive about the rise of new sports streaming services going forward, with 93% predicting moderate to strong growth over the next five years compared to 85% globally.

However, in line with findings from other regions, the cost of sports rights, technology reliability and limited broadband infrastructure are viewed as important challenges in launching sports OTT services.

Furthermore, the research advised that to ensure they stay relevant, pay-TV providers in Latin America will have to develop a wider range of pricing and packaging options. Content piracy is considered a significant challenge in Latin America and NAGRA and MTM say that addressing it will require deeper collaboration across the pay-TV industry.

“It is exciting to see the optimism expressed by Latin American pay-TV service providers as OTT continues to grow and make its mark on the region,” remarked Simon Trudelle, senior director, product marketing at NAGRA. “While challenges remain, they are eager to leverage all that OTT has to offer and with the right technology and support, they can be fast on their way to driving innovative, personalised and secure services for consumers.”

“Pay-TV in Latin America experienced a challenging period during the 2010s, with intense competition, at a regional and national level, piracy concerns, and economic challenges in many parts of the region; however, operators in the region seem to be looking forward to the 2020s with a renewed sense of optimism,” said Jon Watts, managing partner at MTM commenting on Latin American edition of the 2019 Pay-TV Innovation Forum research. “Broadband and connectivity are key to this story, with improved bundling, marketing and packaging helping to drive growth. OTT is also starting to take off in the region so the next decade promises to be an exciting one.”