I’ve been offline on my blog for a couple of months given that I have taken on a new position at my company, as the Product Manager of a very sexy and successful multimedia platform. Since joining a team of very sharp and bright folks, the work has been non-stop. In less than two weeks I wrote over thirty user stories and probably double that many wireframes. Agile and so organized, our developers are spinning out new requests into our QA environment every few days. And, I’ve moved to a nice view overlooking Times Square, so I’ve got going for me, which is nice.
Unfortunately, my job has indirect association with our own Online Video Platform in-house, so I have stopped reviewing third-party OVPs for the time being. It was an important realization when some big OVP providers recently contacted me for help on how different OVPs compare. Instead, I’ve been pouring everything I’ve got into the next version of our platform, which is due at the beginning of December. It is sure to wow our customers and its only getting better.
October 31, 2011 Comments Off
The last couple of weeks have been mind-blowing. Firstly, I have the pleasure of posting my OVP Test Drive reviews on VidCompare.com, thanks to its founder, Kris Drey. Since then, I have been contacted by a few people in the online video industry, complimenting me on how thorough and in-depth those posts really go. Thanks to all those who reached out – the encouragement will only result in more reviews, so stay tuned!
Secondly, to my surprise and excitement, I was contacted by Ooyala and had the chance to speak with its co-founder and President of Products, Bismarck Lepe. During that discussion, Bismarck kindly walked me through a very detailed demo of Backlot and addressed all of the questions I originally raised in my April review of their free trial. Don’t worry – the results of that demo will be shared on this site before the end of the month.
Finally, after the demo, Bismarck was kind enough to answer some general questions I had about Ooyala. The following is an exchange that took place by email late last week.
July 17, 2011 5 Comments
The Online Video Platform market is bursting at the seams with choices, with KIT Digital and Brightcove leading the pack. SaaS-based online video publishing, editing, monetization, and analytics are the main ingredients in an OVP, while tools, widgets, and APIs are added bonuses that are quickly becoming required as well if the smaller businesses plan to continue. So, at what point does an OVP become more that just an empty player? Having all these bells and whistles are nice to have, but its easy to recognize that without quality content for the end user, the player quickly becomes useless.
However, not all OVP customers have access to content that will build and support quality presentations to the end user (notice I didn’t say video). The most time consuming part of building a presentation, whether it be video or a slide deck, is the collection and organization of content – data, slides, and media. Therefore, OVP providers need to worry less about features and more about providing their customers with easy access to content, whether they are through partnerships, acquisitions, home-grown solutions. The tools, player, and ultimately the end user experience should be viewed as nothing more than an enabler – the conveyor of content. When you boil down the OVP to a conveyor of content, and perhaps a side-by-side feature comparison with the top platforms in the market, you’ll begin to realize most of them offer the same goods. Its important to stand out in the crowd.
That all being said, I expect the OVP market will flatten over the next year or two. There are just too many OVPs with the same bells and whistles under the hood. Those providers that have the ability to provide and build quality content will survive longer. Popular providers like Brightcove are likely to gain more attractive partnerships as a result of their initial OVP success. Companies recognize them as a leader, thus I’m certain content providers are approaching them for partnerships. Their success will result in unique content for their player, ultimately expanding their portfolio of big names. The smaller providers will become redundant in the market. If the smaller providers really want to survive, they will need to start talking quickly, if they aren’t already, to data providers with a niche market.
January 21, 2011 Comments Off