As countries around the world impose lockdowns, quarantines, and other social distancing measures to counteract the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, anecdotal evidence that businesses, educational institutions, health organizations, houses of worship, and others are relying on streaming technology to replace in-person communications and interactions is overwhelming. Likewise with OTT-based entertainment and news media, as a newly homebound population seeks to keep apprised of developments in the outside world, consume compelling or diverting family entertainment, or simply fill its time.
But what data exists to quantify these seismic shifts in professional and personal use of streaming technologies and streamed content? Today, video streaming solutions provider LiveU offered some revealing answers on live streaming in particular when the company unveiled a new “State of Live” report, assembled to document newly fueled “demand for live streaming, mobile apps, and live IP video sharing solutions” and to show “the trends over the last five weeks as the coronavirus continues to impact the world.” LiveU generated the data in the report from technology usage statistics of the company’s global customer base.
The “State of Live” report also showed a dramatic increase in live sessions, which grew 50% over the previous five-week period, including double the amount of live sessions, and a 30% increase in users. These numbers, LiveU says, indicate the broad-based growth in streaming usage beyond the news media; other key verticals include worship, musicians who’ve been pulled off the road streaming live performances to social media outlets, and other types of remote (REMI) live production.
The other area LiveU reported on is IP Content Distribution, which has also seen a 35% surge in recent weeks. LiveU attributes the growth in this area to an increase in press conferences by local and national officials and global coverage from areas hit particularly hard by the pandemic.
One of the biggest questions asked during this crisis is when the threat will subside (or at least substantially diminish) and when personal and professional lives and national and global markets will get back to normal, and what “normal” will look like when they do. As for what may lie ahead in the worlds of streaming technology and its applications, LiveU CEO Samuel Wasserman said, “As the market recovers, we believe that live streaming and remote production will continue to be a crucial workflow solution. Of course, together with sports fans around the world, we’re waiting for the return of live sports, with so many exciting productions planned.”