CEO of Plexis a global streaming media company that brings together your favorite content into an OTT video app.
Many things in life are cyclical. As the past few years have shown, this includes how we watch TV.
Not long ago, streaming services were hailed as the future of television for their on-demand, binge-friendly, commercial-free format. But with the recent rise of his FAST service, it’s a complete reversion to linear, passive, and ad-supported channels. FAST channels are seeing increased volume and consumer preference across available platforms.
What is FAST Channel?
For those unfamiliar, FAST stands for free ad-supported television played in a guided, linear format similar to cable and satellite layouts and guides.
Variety VIP+ cites 2020 as the year FAST really took off, and the trajectory since then has been phenomenal. As an early provider of FAST channels, Plex pulled data from an internal analytics dashboard analyzing billions of minutes of programming. This data shows how rapidly it continues to progress. FAST content consumed was only 6% of total Plex content in 2020 compared to his 30% in 2022. Over a billion minutes have been watched since his January 1st of this year. saw.
FAST Channel combines the comfort of traditional broadcasting within a streaming environment. Content is presented on channels where viewers have no control over programming, whereas traditional subscription streaming requires viewers to actively discover and select shows from their streaming platform. Available 24/7, there is growing interest in existing content libraries. friend Also top gear Fully programmed into TED Talks channels or Holiday Classic channels.
Viewers can enjoy passively without paying the monthly subscription fees often associated with streaming, as well as avoiding monthly cable TV bills. FAST content is free, so viewers can save money by watching ads.
What this means for the future of TV
Industry conversations and developments show that many streaming platforms are following the CuriosityStream path, abandoning the subscription model in favor of FAST on as many platforms as possible to drive revenue for existing content libraries. Unit economics for a $5-$10 subscription doesn’t make much sense when you’re paying an average of $50-$75 to acquire subscribers who churn in 6-9 months.
However, it is not without its challenges. While this model offers content providers and platforms many opportunities, it also presents challenges. Platforms are once again having to plan programming, rather than just letting consumers choose on demand. We also assume that consumers will continue to have an appetite for whatever content is being programmed. It’s important to remember that on-demand options have proliferated for a reason.
Consumer viewing habits continue to evolve as streaming options and models advance. With the rise of FAST, consumers got free content (through advertising exposure), content his providers got new revenue channels, and platforms got more content to attract users. .
Considering the options and content that currently exist in the streaming universe, such as subscriptions to original content and blockbuster movies on demand, live news and sports, and FAST channels, things have definitely changed and will continue to do so. will continue to change. The rise of new options like FAST channels aim to give consumers exactly what they want.
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