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8 Streaming Trends for 2020: Top Predictions You Should Be Thinking About

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Video streaming has surpassed all other media in terms of the number of users. Streaming trends indicate that the technology has been reaching new heights. The convergence of new technologies, Internet penetration and an increase in the number of mobile users are the driving forces behind this development. Current streaming statistics reflect these developments.

Online streaming trends indicate that video streaming still leads the pack and will make up 82% of Internet traffic by the year 2022. Video accessibility also plays a part in the increased popularity of streaming. The same goes for the improvement in video quality, which will make streaming popular not only among businesses but to other organizations as well.

The latest digital marketing statistics reflect the increasing role of video streaming in the corporate world. To give you a better idea of how you may use streaming to improve your business, we have compiled some of the latest streaming trends. 

streaming trends web main

But streaming is not limited to video, despite its unprecedented growth. Other media have also taken advantage of the technology. Services such as Spotify and Apple Music have followed suit, offering new music search options and greater accessibility. Convenience is also a driver of this trend, resulting in a 49% growth of the on-demand music streaming market in 2018. 

Global Video Streaming Revenue, 2017-2023

(In Billions of USD)









Designed by

Another notable development in streaming is the rise in the use of mobile devices. Mobile devices account for more than 70% of YouTube watch time. Users have developed a love affair with mobile devices. Such devices are not only used to watch videos but to live broadcast them as well. It is in this context that some see the mass adoption of the vertical and square video formats, which optimize videos’ use of mobile screens.

1. OTT Rising

Over-the-top (OTT) media services are growing, with more than 182 million subscribers in the US alone. The popularity of these platforms stems from the fact that they offer subscribers limitless and instant access to original high-quality content. Popular OTT providers include Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ and HBO, among many others.

Original programming started with Netlix’s creation of “House of Cards” which led to other platforms creating their original content. The global demand for original programming has increased. Consumers belonging to younger age groups even use the provision of original content as the basis for choosing a streaming service. Original programming gave rise to subscriber interactions, which commonly come in the form of debates revolving around popular shows.

OTT services are working overtime to find ways to provide original and high-quality content. The trick seems to work as consumers continue to migrate to online video channels. Many OTT providers have also allied themselves with mobile operators to get a large slice of the pie. Companies are also looking into monetizing content using alternative models, which include ad-based and subscription video on demand. Netflix continues to lead the pack, allocating $12 billion on digital content production in 2018. But it won’t stop there as analysts believe that original content spending could breach the $15 billion mark by 2019.

streaming trends 1

Key takeaways

  • There are more than 182 OTT media service subscribers in the US.
  • Netflix spent $12 billion on digital content production in 2018.
  • Consumers continue to shift to online video channels.

2. Live Streaming Still Social Media Turf

Live streaming on social media began as a non-interactive process. But the most notable of live streaming trends rests on how social media platforms like Facebook, Periscope, and Instagram have established two-way traffic when it comes to live streaming. The use of messaging apps now allows audiences to communicate with live broadcasters. This interactive experience has resulted in the popularity of live streaming among both businesses and consumers. Besides, there are media streaming gadgets that can be used to improve the streaming process.

Live streaming proved to be a robust marketing channel for many companies. This success lies in the fact that live streams are sent directly to audiences who are interested in the broadcast in the first place. Live streaming is likewise being fueled by the massive increase in mobile users. Ecommerce companies have recognized the value of live streaming. These businesses are now conducting live events to showcase their products, improving end-user experience. If you want to further leverage social media in your marketing process, there are top social management tools that you can use.

Top Social Media Platforms for Video Marketing

With 52% of marketers using Facebook Ads Manager







Source: 2018 State of Social Video: Marketer Trends by Animoto

Designed by

Key takeaways

  • Social media platforms have made live streaming an interactive process.
  • Live stream interactions are accomplished through messaging apps.
  • Live streaming has become a valuable marketing tool.

3. Mobile Is Now the Preferred Channel

The mobile channel has surpassed TV in growth as it became the preferred video delivery medium. This growth is being fueled in part by mobile networks’ rush to offer broadband and LTE services. Partnerships between streaming services and mobile networks are mushrooming. These partnerships offer customer incentives in exchange for increased content consumption.

Meanwhile, cable TV subscription has suffered a 3.4% decline in 2017, leaving around 79% of US household still subscribing to cable or satellite TV services. Cord-cutting activity is expected to continue in the coming years as mobile channels grow from content bundling and subsidies.

Key takeaways

  • The mobile channel’s growth has surpassed that of television.
  • Broadband and LTE services have been driving the mobile channel’s growth.
  • Streaming services have been partnering with mobile networks.

4. Extended Business Applications

Now, we know that many companies pounced on the opportunity to use streaming to market their brands. These days, that’s no longer the case as businesses find new ways to leverage the technology. Video streaming has found its way through processes such as virtual doctor visits and drive-through banking. But perhaps, the most promising use of the technology is in customer support.

Organizations are now using video streaming to help customers troubleshoot product and service issues. Video streaming’s interactive nature contributes to customer experience, which is now considered a critical element of customer service. This, of course, is apart from the fact that technology eliminates the need to have a technician to be physically present to troubleshoot problems. 

The most common types of videos created by businesses





Social Media Videos


Explainer Videos


Product Videos


Customer Videos


How-to/Educational Videos


Thought Leadership




Cultural Videos






Source: Video in Business Benchmark Report by Vidyard, November 2018

Designed by

Key takeaways

  • Companies are using streaming to boost customer support.
  • Video streaming contributes to the customer experience.
  • Businesses use video streaming to help consumers troubleshoot product/service issues.

5. Fragmentation of OTT Content

OTT’s growth inevitably led to these services finding niche content of their own. And this is one of the most notable streaming services trends there is. This is apparent in the case of Disney, who decided to pull its contract with providers Hulu and Netflix. The company’s plan to launch its own OTT streaming platform, Disney+ is proof that content fragmentation is well on its way. This development can only be caused by stiff competition, which is bound to further increase.

Another example is streaming services’ fight to retain profitable content. But such contracts can only last for so long. Case in point–Netflix’s retention of the TV sitcom “Friends.” As steady as the service’s partnership with WarnerMedia may seem, pundits believe that the latter would eventually move original content to its platform soon.

Fragmentation of OTT Content

Key takeaways

  • OTT media services are developing niche content.
  • Stiff competition has resulted in OTT content fragmentation.
  • OTT media services are fighting to retain popular content.

6. Music Streaming Displaces Radio

Video didn’t kill the radio guy. Yes, streaming trends music will do that instead. The most prominent of streaming trends, music impacts young audiences the most. Younger age groups now prefer streaming music over the radio–and for good reason. Music streaming is all about music. There are no DJs, no time checks and most of all no lengthy advertisements. Also, unlike radio where one needs to request for songs, music streaming lets one choose from millions of titles and play them from any device. 

Consider the following figures. 56% of Gen Z use YouTube to listen to music, while radio listeners come in at just 39%. These figures say that this age group won’t become avid radio listeners anytime soon. Worse, podcasts are gaining traction and could very well soon get to have more senior audiences. And then there is the tech bundling that major services are bankrolling. This would make music streaming but a part of these companies’ offerings.

Key Revenue Creators for Recorded Music

Music Streaming

Physical Revenue

Performance Rights

Digital Revenue


Credit: IFPI 2018

Designed by

Key takeaways

  • Younger consumers prefer music streaming over the radio.
  • Gen Z members will not become radio fans.
  • Podcasts will attract senior audiences.

7. Streaming Trends by Industry

Live streaming is currently being used by e-commerce companies, leveraging the technology to market their products and services. This improves customers’ online shopping experience, bringing them closer to brands. The same goes for educational institutions, who have been streaming lessons to online students. This enriches students’ classroom experience through visual demos and live lesson broadcasts.

For the healthcare sector, streaming proved its worth by allowing medical practitioners to hold online training sessions and care for patients in real-time. For offshore practitioners, live streaming helps surgeons during offshore surgeries. Finally, the gaming sector uses live streaming to reach out to a wider audience and promote engagement. 

Type of Content Customers want to see from a Brand or Business

Base: 3,010 consumers in Mexico, Colombia, Germany, and the US





Social images


Social videos


Blog articles


Content in PDF form


Source: HubSpot Content Trends Survey, Q3 2017

Designed by

Key takeaways

  • E-commerce companies are using live streaming in marketing.
  • Live streaming improves customer experience.
  • Healthcare providers are using live streaming in training and patient care.

8. IOT Video Streaming

Internet of Things (IoT) video streaming is already being used in a variety of settings. These include law enforcement and endoscopic surgeries. These days, IoT video streaming is being targeted at consumers as a result of the increase in the number of devices connected to the Internet. 

Consumer applications of IoT video streaming range from doorbell cameras, pet monitors, IP cameras to security cameras. Consumer use of IoT video streaming is limited only by the imagination. And with the advent of 5G Internet, the technology’s use in home monitoring will only expand.

Key takeaways

  • Law enforcers and surgeons now use IoT streaming.
  • Increased connectivity has resulted in the targeting of IoT video streaming at consumers.
  • IoT video streaming will see increased use in home monitoring.

Use These Trends to Improve Your Business

So what have we learned so far? Streaming will become one of the most used technologies of the 21st century. What used to be though as an entertainment medium has branched out to critical business areas, albeit, little by little. For now, music and video streaming dominate the landscape. OTT streaming platforms are growing at a break-neck speed, becoming an industry that’s worth billions of dollars.

Live streaming has proved to be a boon for many businesses that now use it to market their products and services. Social media is still the platform of choice for these companies such as Facebook, Instagram, and Periscope. These platforms have improved live streaming, making it a means by which sellers can interact with customers. Messaging apps have made it possible for audiences to communicate with organizations in real-time.

But streaming is not confined to video. The music industry has likewise immensely benefited from streaming. Music streaming platforms like Spotify have overtaken radio as younger generations turn to them to listen to music. Music streaming platforms have all the radio’s strength minus its weaknesses.

The trends discussed above are real and continue to occur even as we speak. You can leverage these trends by taking examples of the companies that underwent positive changes from using streaming technology. You can boost your marketing, social media presence and even improve customer experience using streaming. Also, marketing executives now use streaming as can be seen in the latest video marketing statistics. Whatever the application you have in mind, just make sure you heed these trends and you should be fine.

By Jenny Chang

Senior writer at FinancesOnline who writes about a wide range of SaaS and B2B products, including trends and issues on e-commerce, accounting and customer service software. She’s also covered a wide range of topics in business, science, and technology for websites in the U.S., Australia and Singapore, keeping tabs on edge tech like 3D printed health monitoring tattoos and SpaceX’s exploration plans.

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