According to IHS forecasts, smartphone and tablet sales will continue to increase in the next four years, helping the apps market grow: they will account for 70% of all connected devices by 2017.

However, in spite of faster 4G networks in most major markets and larger screen devices that help drive demand for mobile apps, video monetisation remains more of a challenge for operators and content providers.

Video app-specific revenues are rare indeed, as there are few which monetise users. Video content is still provided as part of a wider cross-platform proposition or subscription in many cases, and TV companies even embrace free apps.

App providers should learn from games’ continued success online, driven by freemium business models, the report suggests. TV and video companies provide a vast array of apps, but most of them don’t offer-long form video content, and have yet to choose their forms of monetisation.

Most mobile operators will not see a direct revenue from this shift, and should team up with video service providers to differentiate their 4G plans, or maybe not even charge 4G in exchange of bundled video content.


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IHS Screen Digest is the largest media-focused research firm in the world, with more than 50 analysts covering over 65 global territories.

About Author

As Head of Social Media for Reed MIDEM, James Martin oversees social strategy and deployment for B2B events MIPTV and MIPCOM, Midem (music industry) and MIPIM & MAPIC (real estate & retail). He is based in Reed MIDEM's Paris office.

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