According to a new report from DFC Intelligence, the total number of video streams served reached 565.3 million during the first three months of 2001. This represents a 204% increase over the comparable period in 2000. Based on these findings, DFC Intelligence is increasing estimates for the full year 2001 to a total of 1.8 billion video streams served. Of those streams accessed, it is forecasted that 51.7% will be at rates of 56.6 Kbps and below, with 48.3% at broadband rates of 100 Kbps and above.
DFC Intelligence tracks streams served in several specific content categories including news, information, sports, music, film-related content, general entertainment and Internet TV. Most streams in these categories are served from North American sites. However, as much as 20% of all usage is generated by an international audience.
“The double-digit jump in streaming usage continues a pattern that was established throughout 2000,” noted research director Paul Palumbo. “There is not only more content available, it’s available at higher bit rates. Furthermore, audiences continue to become increasingly educated about where, when and how to access content.”
“The real significance of these streams is audiences are choosing to view them,” says Palumbo. “This can present a highly targeted advertising opportunity. There is an average of 1.2 video advertising opportunities per stream, and advertisers are beginning to take notice.”
The First Quarter 2001 report indicates significant gains in both audience size and streaming usage for a range of sites destinations and networks. The data reveals that, on average, First Quarter 2001 streams (video, and in some cases, audio) are 94.2% higher than average year 2000 streams on a direct site-to-site comparison. Moreover, audiences are forming loyalties to both narrowband and broadband brands. This is occurring for not only cross-platform media brand like CNN.com, MSNBC.com, the WWF.com, but also for a handful of brands that are native to the online medium, most notably Launch.com, LikeTelevision.com, and BreakTV.
According to Palumbo, a portion of the large jump in usage can be attributed to major platforms and content offerings that were not available in the First Quarter of 2000. Leading examples include the AOL+ service and The Lord of the Rings Channel (a partnership of New Line Cinema and Real Networks).
The new report is an update to the January 2001 report Interactive Broadcast Video: Streaming Video Market Analysis 1998-2004. DFC Intelligence publishes detailed research and analysis on streaming media markets in several research reports including DB&P/Webcast Track, Streaming Avails Report, Streaming Ad Insertion and Commerce report and the Interactive Broadcast Video report.