By Christophe Firth, Media & Telecoms Consultant at A.T. Kearney Middle East
Globally, over-the-top video (OTTv) is becoming mainstream. In the Middle East, however, OTTv is still nascent by global standards. Fewer than 100,000 homes subscribe to dedicated commercial OTTv services—less than one per cent of television-viewing households. Yet interest is strong and the market is evolving. Istikana and icflix launched the region’s first major standalone OTTv services in 2011 and 2013 respectively. OSN recently followed by announcing the launch of Go by OSN for non-pay TV subscribers. In 2014, beIN SPORTS relaunched its OTT service and began selling multiscreen subscriptions, and MBC partnered with Samsung to launch Shahid on smart TVs.