To put it simply, OTT stands for over-the-top, which refers to any app or service that delivers a product over the Internet, instead of using the traditional distribution channel. The services that are provided in this way are usually related to media and communication. Both consumers and business users benefit from OTT communication applications and services, as they are less expensive than the traditional method of delivery.
Netflix, Roku, Hotstar, Hulu, and HBO Go are some popular examples of over-the-top services that delivers content over the Internet. And in the process, they are giving a tough competition to the traditional cable or satellite TV companies and also to the traditional ISPs and telcos.
However, that does not mean that traditional distributors are going to disappear from the distribution landscape. Instead, they will continue to play a crucial role in the market, especially in the growth of OTT services. This is because, in order to access OTT apps and services, users need a broadband connection, which is usually provided by cable companies.
But, OTT services are definitely going to change the media and communication industry by empowering users to select and watch what they like to watch. At present, the traditional cable companies are not giving much choice to the viewers. Viewers subscribing to a traditional cable or satellite pay TV service have to pay for a bunch of channels they don’t even watch, in order to get the channel they actually want.
With OTT, viewers can pay for what they actually watch and this is the reason many cable companies are losing their customers rapidly in the last few years. In the coming days, the traditional cable companies have to reinvent themselves and change the traditional model of providing services, if they want to counter the rise of OTT.
OTT communication solutions can also help cut down the cost of international calling by reducing the international calling fees. Consumers can also opt for video calling. Currently, small and medium enterprises are using OTT communication solutions for reducing the cost of international calling.
The consumption of OTT services are going to increase considerably in the coming days, and the traditional cable companies and telcos are already feeling the heat. By 2025, the global OTT devices and services market is expected reach USD 165 billion, from $29 billion in 2015. To sum up, OTT services are set to disrupt the media and communication industry and users can expect to benefit hugely from this disruption.