Set-Top VOD Ad Views Surging

Though viewing trends continue to shift to mobile and specialized OTT devices, the set-top box is experiencing a bit of a renaissance with respect to VOD ad views, according to a new study from FreeWheel, the Comcast-owned online ad-tech company.

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Growth in set-top VOD ad views, for programmers that have enabled dynamic ad insertion, rocketed 103% year-over-year, and a share of 16%, per FreeWheel’s Q3 Video Monetization Report, which based its findings on more than 47 billion video views in the period.

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Desktop/laptops held the largest share of online VOD ad views, at 36% and up 11% YoY, while showing more signs of leveling out,  followed by OTT devices (22%, up 63% YoY), set-top VOD, smartphones (17%, up 39%), and tablets (9%, up 15% YoY).

Overall, ad views rose 28% YoY, while video views climbed 37%, driven by greater consumption of short-form video, FreeWheel said.  Short-form content rose 31% in the period due in part to news clip viewing tied to the U.S. election

Driven by news coverage and the Rio Olympics, live content  rose 60% YoY, versus a rise of 18% for long-form VOD (20 minutes or more), and 31% for short-form VOD (less than five minutes).

The Summer Games also helped the share of ad views from authenticated (TV Everywhere) viewing for long-form and live content to again reach a peak of 72%, the same high-water mark achieved in Q1 2016.