Video creation used to be an exclusive privilege that is accessible to private individuals and enterprises who could afford expensive hardware and costly post-editing software.
Today, digital disruption has revolutionized, popularized and humanized both video-making and video-consumption. Everyone with a smartphone is walking around with a HD camera in the pocket, accompanied by user-friendly software to create sharing-worthy videos on multiple social media platforms. Video has become an essential part of everyday life, transforming consumer behavior as well as providing enterprises with a new tool for business enablement.
Drivers for video traffic growth
Video currently stands out as the most significant type of data consumed by smartphone users, making up for around 60 percent of total data traffic. Video is also increasingly embedded in all types of online content with a growing trend towards immersive technologies such as virtual and augmented reality.
User behavior is also changing, as we spend more time everyday streaming video clips on social media, tuning into shows on demand on multiple devices, as well as sharing video content with friends, anytime and anywhere. There is also a shift from low-and standard-definition video formats to 720p HD and 1080p Full HD, enhancing viewer experience significantly.
According to the latest Ericsson Mobility Report, monthly mobile data traffic per smartphone continues to increase globally, driven by devices with larger screens and higher resolutions, more affordable data plans, data-intensive content, as well as improved network performance. In Southeast Asia and Oceania (excluding India and China), monthly mobile data traffic per active smartphone is expected to experience a six-fold increase from 3.8GB in 2018 to 19GB by 2024.
It comes as no surprise that video traffic on mobile networks is the main driver for the exponential growth in mobile data traffic, forecasted to grow by around 35 percent annually for the next six years, and to account for 74 percent of all mobile data traffic by 2024.
Video is undoubtedly, here to stay for good, playing a substantial role in everyday modern life, acting as a social connector for the private individual, a business enabler for the retail sector and an accelerator for smart enterprises and industries in the future.
Transforming how we live, learn and work
According to Zenith’s Online Video Forecasts 2018, global online video consumption grew by 11 minutes a day last year to reach 67 minutes a day, and it is expected to grow by an average of 9 minutes a day each year. By 2020, the average person will be spending 84 minutes a day watching videos online.
Millennials especially, are gradually abandoning traditional TV and adopting their portable digital devices as miniature TVs. The rapid rise in video viewing makes online video the world’s fastest-growing advertising format for retailers to attract and convert shoppers into buyers.
A study which was conducted in the US last year to examine the impact of influencer marketing and social media on purchasing behavior among consumers, found that more than eight in 10 respondents were swayed by video to purchase a product, compared to half that number who were driven to purchase by textual social media content.
In addition to digital platforms, some consumer brands have launched home appliances such as refrigerators with a screen on the front, that can synchronize with a smart TV and broadcast video content simultaneously in the kitchen while it plays on the television set in another room, extending the reach of traditionally non-video viewing platforms.
The concept of smart homes, offices and cities enables the use of video cameras and facial recognition technology in every corner of our working and living space, storing hours of collected footage in the cloud. This includes gadgets such as video doorbells that provide glimpses of visitors on the porch when the doorbell rings, as well as video surveillance cameras that allow family members to keep watch on their children and pets in real-time while working at the office or away overseas.
Going beyond videos, Gartner’s top 10 strategic technologies for 2019 predicts that digitization will blend the digital and physical worlds together to create an immersive world, changing how humans perceive and interact with the world today.
Video as a business enabler
In the year 2022, 70% of enterprises will be experimenting with immersive technologies for consumer and enterprise use, and 25% will have deployed to production. Augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR) are expected to have a considerable impact on sectors including industrial manufacturing and maintenance, sports events, architecture, navigation and tourism.
With the help of immersive technologies, an expert engineer will be able to work with a colleague in a remote factory to get a piece of equipment back online when the production line is shut down, increasing productivity, efficiency and safety levels.
Two key factors in enabling new immersive formats to go mainstream will be reductions in latency and support for more symmetrical uplink/downlink throughput – both of which are attributes of 5G, not forgetting greater reliability as well as higher speeds.
This was seen through cloud-gaming and VR training simulator demonstrations earlier this month at the launch of 5G Garage, Singapore’s first live 5G facility. The 5G Garage is a collaboration between Ericsson, Singtel and Singapore Polytechnic (SP) that is aimed at creating a thriving 5G ecosystem in Singapore through the development of 5G solutions for enterprises.
According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, the world average data consumption for video streaming is forecasted to reach 16.3GB per month at the end of 2024, while the world average data consumption will stand at 21GB for the same period.
Judging by these figures, video is here to stay, and will drive data consumption as well as digital disruption for good, in 2019 and beyond.
This article was first published on Questex, on 18 February 2019. Information is correct at the time of publication.