Streaming has changed significantly over the past decade, and there’s no sign of stopping. The world of online content and entertainment continues to shift, and 2022 will be no exception.
The Analysts at Hub Research have compiled their top five predications for the streaming industry for the upcoming year, leading with a big one about Roku.
1. Roku Will Be Bought
Hub analyst Peter Fondulas is predicting that a leading player in the market will buy Roku, facilitating Roku’s expansion to the international market. The analyst even goes so far as to name drop a major company like Apple, saying Roku would be a perfect fit for the Fruit. Roku would give Apple’s TV service a boost by offering consumers a lower-priced alternative to the Apple TV box.
“Roku’s efforts to catch up to competitors internationally would get a significant boost by partnering with a company already well established outside the US,” said Fondulas. “At the same time, a company looking to expand its advertising business would benefit from Roku’s robust data collection tools.”
2. Smart TVs Will Become the Standard
With viewers utilizing so many different streaming services (the average consumer subscribes to 4), Smart TVs are a must-have. Hub predicts that sales of standalone streaming devices will begin to decline as smart TVs become the norm, something we’ve already begun to see. Smart TVs are easy to set up, and eliminate the need for cumbersome HDMI cables, cords, and switching back and forth from sources to access different streaming services.
3. More Companies Will Create Their Own TV Operating Systems
Comcast and Amazon are ahead of the competition with their own products already in market, and Hub predicts that other TV streaming companies will follow suit.
“After almost 100 years, the TV set is poised to become its own gatekeeper, eclipsing ‘middlemen’ like broadcasters, cable providers, and more recently streamers,” says analyst David Tice.
4. Netflix will Start to Feel the Pressure
New mergers popping up, like the Discovery and Warner merger in particular will result in a new streamer to rival Netflix, placing heat on the OG streaming service. This year will be the year Netflix faces the most competition ever, and analysts say Netflix will have to fight harder to maintain its position as the ‘home base’ for streaming consumers.
5. Library Content Will Become More Valuable
While trending new Originals can generate a lot of buzz for streaming services, compelling library content will be an antidote to “content inflation” – especially for big organizations with lots of IP to leverage, like ViacomCBS and WarnerMedia.
“Buzzy originals attract new subscribers. But catalog shows like ‘Friends’ and ‘The Office’ have often out-performed originals on streaming platforms, while platforms like Pluto have acquired big user bases with very few originals. For many viewers, a good show is a good show, whether it’s brand new or just ‘new-to-me,’” says Jon Giegengack.