Device fragmentation: What is it, and how do you tackle it?

What is device fragmentation? In this blog, we cover how to tackle it, and what platforms are important to your OTT service.

What does device fragmentation mean? Think of a scenario where a wide variety of devices is in use at any given time, with both older and newer devices using different versions of multiple operating systems. The number of devices and operating systems requiring proprietary apps built for compatibility with TV and video devices is still expanding, so knowing which are important to your business is key.

The world of mobile app development is simple in comparison, with only two operating systems dominating the market, but TV and video are fragmented significantly with an array of devices available. Some fridges even have smart screens that support streaming applications, so do you stop at Smart TVs and games consoles, or do you really need to be everywhere… even the fridge?

Be where your customers are, but don’t milk it 🐄

For the first time ever, streaming was more popular than both cable and broadcast TV in July 2022, with a record 34.8% share of total television consumption. Showing that audience viewing habits are leaning towards streaming, it’s important to be available where existing and potential customers want you to be. Mobile and Tablet both outrank Connected TV devices in viewing consumption habits, but only by a small percentage, so you would ideally want to be across all these devices with a full set of applications. Not being on the platform of choice for a potential viewer is as useful to them as finding an empty bottle of milk in the fridge door but being available everywhere isn’t sustainable unless it delivers ROI. The name of the game is prioritising the most popular platforms, with the option of expanding to the ones with the most potential for growth in the future. So, how do you know where your audience is?

User behaviour and seamless experiences

Competition is rife for each audience member, so it’s crucial to be able to win them over with a consistent experience across all touchpoints. Whether they are accessing your service from their mobile or Smart TV, consistency is key. Actionable insights into viewer behaviour are where you'll be able to learn and deliver this for your customers, so having excellent insights and analytics integration with your platforms is a must.

Out-of-the-box applications 🧊

Creating separate applications for each platform and device is the harsh reality faced by streaming and OTT providers, but it’s no reason to get frosty. Utilising an experienced technology partner to overcome this complexity and develop multi-platform apps is a simple way to diffuse your service in a saturated market. By using an out-of-the-box set of applications, you avoid the extensive QA process of developing from scratch and get tried and tested apps with a significantly reduced time to market.

Move with the times 🚀

Seizing the opportunity that a new platform or device presents could be the difference between winning new customers for your OTT service or giving them away to your competitors. Rather than having to develop a proprietary application for the new device or platform, you could avoid this costly process by working with a tech partner to do this for you.

A word from our Head of Sales, Josh Harrington:  

You may have worked in your industry for a decade or longer and learnt by making mistakes that ultimately led to where you are right now. Imagine that you decided to start your own airline tomorrow, would you also build the plane? This is where you can make the decision that sets you apart from your competition in the OTT industry, while they’re still figuring out where the wings go.

Eager to learn more about tackling device fragmentation? Book a meeting with us here.