OTT Media vs. Cable and Satellite TV: Understanding the Difference in Subscription Models

Entertainment subscription has been a hot topic among consumers for the last few years. With the rise of niche streaming services to compete with OTT media giants like Netflix, traditional broadcast companies are also making efforts to stay competitive with an influx of new live streaming services. Learn more about these subscription models and what the future of live streaming will look like.

Understanding the Difference in Subscription Models on OTT vs. Cable & Satellite

The subscription models for cable and satellite TV typically include access to standard broadcast networks, with additional channel packages focused on sports, children's content, and premium channels. Some subscription packages are combined with internet services and on-demand video access. Consumers using cable and satellite TV typically have access to hundreds of live channels.

OTT streaming models offer a wide range of on-demand content, including original content, that can be accessed via the internet for a much smaller fee. OTT streaming platforms like Netflix offer hundreds of titles from every genre, whereas niche OTT platforms may focus on offering only branded original content. One unique advantage of OTT platforms is the ability to allow multiple users to access the account from the same IP address.

Why Do Consumers Prefer OTT Services?

If the total takeover of Netflix has proven anything, it's that consumers prefer streaming services over traditional cable and satellite TV. There are a few reasons why consumers are turning to OTT platforms like Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, and AppleTV, such as the lower cost of subscriptions and access to original content.

Even if a consumer has multiple streaming service subscriptions, the overall bill is usually much lower than the cost of traditional cable or satellite TV. Access to high-quality content on streaming platforms is also important, particularly because streaming platforms are willing to invest in niche television and movies that may not be funded by traditional broadcast networks.

The Future of Live Streaming Services

In general, live streaming has traditionally relied entirely on a satellite or cable TV connection. In the past, the only way to access previously-aired live content was to access video-on-demand content offered by traditional broadcasting companies. However, with OTT platforms, live streaming is quickly becoming just as direct as on-demand content on streaming services.

Specifically, the future of live streaming can be explored with FAST channels. FAST (free ad-supported streaming TV) is the OTT streaming service answer to traditional live broadcasting. With an OTT service that supports FAST channels, consumers can access live television through the internet. Some consumers switching from cable to OTT may appreciate the familiarity of live programming on a smaller number of curated, interest-driven channels.

Thrifty consumers are always comparing the best way to access content without spending excessive money. This is one of the major reasons why OTT platforms are preferred among consumers, and why traditional cable and satellite subscription models are incorporating on-demand services to stay competitive. To learn more about how to curate an OTT platform, get in touch with Lightcast today.