As the cord cutting movement catches fire the number of major companies turning their eye to the market grows. Even established studios like NBCUniversal are launching a slate of shows created for the internet. Other companies like Yahoo and Microsoft are creating new studios solely focused on shows for the internet. Some like Netflix have seen great success from original shows like ‘House of Cards’ and reviving classics like ‘Arrested Development’.
If you are a dedicated cord cutter looking for original content only available online the first place to look will be content from Netflix. They are currently the leader in the subscription online video and the leader in original content. With shows like season 2 of ‘Orange Is The New Black’ coming out June 2014 and a slate of shows rolling out latter in the year Netflix is clearly dedicated to high quality original programming.
Amazon is pushing original shows in a slightly different manor than Netflix but is just as dedicated. Even though Amazon has not had the break out success Netflix has, their shows have a dedicated following. Amazon’s game plan of releasing a new episode each week as opposed to Netflix releasing them seasons at at a time is to new to compare but is something to keep a eye on. No matter which model wins the competition is good for cord cutters. Amazon is clearly in second place when it comes to original content for cord cutters.
Some of Hulus greatest success with original content comes from their reality show ‘Behind The Mask’ and their efforts to mock reality shows with ‘The Hot Wives of Orlando’. Hulu has over 7 original shows slated for 2014 bring them in at a solid third.
NBCUniversal recently announced that they have 12 original shows being created for web distribution. This is NBCUniversals second attempt at feature shows made for the web but this time they will be bringing some big franchises to the effort with a ‘Heros” spin-off. It is great to see a traditionally network TV studio jumping into the web TV market using some of their big name franchises. NBC Universal is now in fourth place in the battle for online content.
Microsoft has long history of producing short form video shows for their Xbox platform and various websites. Now Microsoft is jumping into the long form scripted shows ranging from comedies to a stop motion animated show. Microsoft sees original content as a way to sell Xbox systems. It will be interesting to see if they allow the shows to be distributed to non Xbox owners at a latter date. Microsoft gets a A+ for online content but the limitation of Xbox only puts them at fifth place in our line up.
Yahoo makes the list in 6th place after they relieved the development of four new comedies for their Yahoo Screen network. Yahoo already has a huge catalog of shows on Yahoo Screen coming from their partnership with NBCUniversal. Yahoo Screens new Roku app also allows you to bring great shows like SNL to your TV. Yahoo’s line up is limited but it is a good start.
There are so many companies creating original content but we had to limit our selves to just the top 6 we think will make the most impact in 2014. Hopefully we will get even more great shows and new studios in 2015.