While everyone was busy switching to satellite TV and upgrading their DVD collections to Blu-ray, streaming video was quietly changing the way we consume content. Then BAM—one day last week YouTube released some staggering numbers. Visitors to their site watch an average of 4 billion videos per day (as in billions) and upload 60 hours of video content every minute (as in one hour of video every second). Their announcement was another clear indicator that the same disruptive force that forever transformed the music industry now has its sites clearly set on the television business.
But what took it so long?
Early tablet PCs seemed a lot more like Transformers than the tablets we’re more familiar with today. By day, they looked like your standard run-of-the-mill laptop. By night, with a few twists and turns you could have…well…your laptop. Sure you could write on them with a fancy plastic pen, but they were still a little clunky. Smartphones are nice, but who really wants to curl up on the couch after a long day at work to watch a football game or movie on a 3-inch screen?
Then, all of a sudden, tablets became more viewing friending—thanks in large part to some creative design inspiration from the folks at Apple. Once the iPad hit the scene, people started using it to consume video content and their behavior immediately started to change.
"Peak usage for video on the web is noon on a weekday. Peak times for our app on the iPad are between 8-11 p.m. on weekdays and afternoons on Saturdays and Sundays," said Mark Hall founder of Remixation, Inc.—the company behind Showyou, a San Francisco-based startup recognized by critics and users as one of the best video apps for the iPad and iPhone. In just a short period of time, tablets are starting to compete for the prime-time television audience—something that would have been unheard of even two years ago. "With tablets, people are able to navigate through huge amounts of video content and that is causing a huge disruption to broadcast and cable television" he added.
As viewing behaviors continue to shift from PCs and laptops to tablets, and apps get better and better at allowing users to search and share content, streaming video will continue to revolutionize the way we consume video content. So get your popcorn ready!
[Flickr user Oblivious Dude]