12.07.2015Enterprise Tech

Consumer expectations and technology drive an evolving media and entertainment ecosystem

By: Janet Brumfield

A perfect storm is brewing that is having a profound impact on the media and entertainment industry as we currently know it. Changing consumer expectations, a rapidly evolving technology landscape and the ever increasing demand for relevant and compelling content are driving change across the entire ecosystem. The following factors are driving media and entertainment in the digital age.

  • New content formats. The theatrical movie-going experience is driving demand for enriched entertainment experiences in the home. What started with 3D and even 4D, will ultimately be driven by high-dynamic range, virtual reality, augmented reality and 4K ultra-high definition Blu-ray, all of which are seeing increased adoption.
  • New consumption habits. Increasingly, consumers want to view their entertainment and news where, when and how they choose. Gone are the days of sitting in the family room in front of the television watching a program at the appointed time. Over-the-top and mobile platforms, as well as digital video recorders have untethered consumers from scheduled programming, ultimately changing how and when content is consumed and shared.
  • New ways to interact. The proliferation of consumption platforms is enabling consumers to engage with their content in new ways. Theaters will need to emphasize the social benefits of the shared-group experience to fill seats. Home and on-the-go entertainment options will need to focus on multi-screen viewing to keep consumers engaged. The technologies and platforms that succeed will need to create value for the entire ecosystem from the end user to the content developers, distributors and technology companies.

With all of these dynamics at play, it’s no surprise that companies across the entire media and entertainment ecosystem are grappling with this fast-changing environment and working to ensure their business models maximize value, while developing technology strategies that meet consumer demands. The following are three key areas where substantial focus should be placed:

  • Create distinctive content. Content is king. From movie studios investing in major franchises to over-the-top providers purchasing exclusive original programing to mobile platforms sponsoring short-form video series, the world of content has never been more competitive as media and entertainment companies seek to boost brand recognition, viewer loyalty and revenue.
  • Embrace mobile. The viewing of content on mobile devices is exploding, and the impact on the creation and distribution of this content is far reaching. Content creators are adapting the formats they use – some studios are cutting episodic programs into short clips – to create a better end-user experience for mobile viewing. Distribution companies will need to cope with the reformatting and resizing of content for multiple devices without adversely impacting production pipelines. Digital-rights management will need to be a focus in order to enable viewing across consumers’ multiple in-home and mobile devices.
  • Invest in technology and reengineer business processes. The creation and distribution of digital content will require special attention from a network and IT infrastructure perspective. New digital content formats and multi-screen requirements will place huge demands on networks, processing facilities and storage. Technologies such as high-speed broadband networks, cloud –based compute and storage solutions and advanced content delivery networks are now available to reliably and cost effectively provide computing power, data storage and content transmission. The move to digital will also require a focus on cybersecurity measures to protect valuable assets.

Ultimately, the most successful media and entertainment companies will be those that embrace digital technologies and transform their business models to reflect changing consumer expectations. Embracing these technologies and developing pragmatic adoption roadmaps will be critical. Download the latest Verizon media and entertainment white paper, Delivering Immersive Entertainment, for additional insights. Visit the media and entertainment industry resource page on the Verizon Enterprise Solutions website for more information.