It’s been about four years since the millennial demographic began consistently consuming more digital video than TV. Today, the OTT video industry is flourishing with no end in sight. Case in point: 2017 worldwide revenue came close to $47 billion. In 2018, U.S. OTT revenue alone grew by more than 25%. And looking ahead, experts at Streaming Media predict that worldwide OTT revenue will reach $129 billion by 2023. As a direct result of this trend, businesses across all sectors are capitalizing on the profits of online video making and distribution. Relatedly, there are more streaming solutions for video hosting on the market than ever before.
In 2019, these online video platforms are increasingly necessary for hosting and delivering online video across the world. In this article, we’ll consider how streaming solutions for video hosting can help to boost your business. Then, we’ll compare and contrast five top video hosting platforms. In particular, the streaming solutions for video hosting under review here include Brightcove, Dacast, Vidyard, Vimeo, and Wistia.
Let’s get started!
Boosting your business with online video
As of 2015, young millennials (ages 14-25) watched more videos on digital devices than on TV. Since then, online video consumption has far surpassed regular TV consumption for all kinds of viewers. Moreover, the broadcasting industry continues to grow. Among other advantages, online video streaming comes with fewer limitations than TV (e.g., limited bandwidth on the airwaves). Likewise, the global internet user base continues to grow into the billions. And this means that digital video is exploding in all kinds of realms.
With that context in mind, let’s take a closer look at some applications of streaming solutions for video hosting!
Applications of streaming solutions for video hosting
Unsurprisingly, businesses and individuals across multiple industries are taking advantage of this trend.
In the entertainment industry, for example, Netflix and countless other OTT video providers have revolutionized the market. Relatedly, concerts and live sports now stream live around the world, expanding viewership into the millions. Corporate users, too, consider VOD and live streaming ideal tools for marketing and internal communications. For example, a 2018 study found that 82 percent of viewers have a preference for seeing a live stream over a brand’s social posts.
So, what do all of these trends have in common? Taken together, they signal the rise of online video content and live streaming in all kinds of industries, as well as our daily lives.
Top 5 streaming solutions for video hosting
With that industry background established, let’s turn to look at five specific streaming solutions for video hosting. Of course, these aren’t the only streaming platforms on the market. For example, free, B2C (consumer-grade) platforms like YouTube Live and Facebook Live have become commonplace. However, most broadcasters and businesses will want to look elsewhere for professional video hosting. (For more information, we’ve written lots of articles on the differences between consumer-grade and pro streaming solutions.)
In our comparisons below, we’ll start with a basic overview of the platform. Then, we’ll do a review of the best features and pricing details for each OVP.
First up is Brightcove. Brightcove’s streaming solutions mainly target large businesses. Among its products, Video Cloud is a streaming video solution for hosting on-demand and live video. This service includes an all-screen video player, monetization tools, and analytics.
In 2019, Brightcove purchased the Ooyala OVP. From Brightcover’s remarks at NAB, it appears that the company plans to integrate Ooyala features into its existing platform and ultimately dissolve Ooyala.
Brightcove best features
- Major focus on advertising functionality and monetization
- Integration with CRM and marketing platforms
- HTML5 all-device video player
- Social media tools
- Single Sign-On (SSO) for corporate users
Do you plan to use streaming solutions not only for video hosting but also for live streaming? If so, you’ll need to choose the $499 per month Enterprise Communications plan. This plan also includes security features, internal portals, and SSO (Single Sign-On). For high-volume streaming, Brightcove also offers a Monetization plan, which is custom-priced and geared toward large-budget streaming with advertising. This is the only plan that supports 24/7 live streaming, server-side ad insertion, and OTT solutions.
First launched in 2010, Dacast offers a broad range of live streaming and video hosting solutions for business and individual users. Based in San Francisco, this platform also has offices in Paris and Manila.
More than 120,000 broadcasters have used our streaming solution to add online video to their businesses. Our users do so either via our white-label online video platform, or via our video API. The latter supports integrating all the features into your own digital media workflows.
In 2019, Dacast also acquired video hosting platform vzaar. Vzaar is an advanced video hosting service, which originally launched in 2007 as a video platform for eBay users. This platform’s role as an online bazaar for videos yielded the name vzaar. With China video hosting for VOD content, this Dacast advanced video hosting platform is an excellent option for in the education, media, publishing, and e-commerce sectors.
Dacast best features
- Native html5 video player with HLS low latency streaming
- Monetization via built-in paywall for pay-per-view or subscriptions
- White-label service
- Analytics dashboard including real-time analytics
- Robust APIs & documentation, including code samples and sandboxes
- Video content delivery via the Akamai CDN
- 24/7 customer support at all plan levels
Dacast pricing starts at only $19 per month, and accessible options not offered by many other OVPs. This Starter plan includes live streaming and on-demand video hosting with 100 GB of bandwidth and 20 GB of storage. The Premium plan, for $125 per month, includes 2 TB of bandwidth and 200GB of storage. Our most popular plan, it also adds monetization, API functionality, phone support, and chapter markers for VODs. The Enterprise plan, at $289 per month, includes all the above features plus 5 TB bandwidth and 500Gb storage. Finally, for higher-volume streaming custom plans include the same diverse features and further reduce bandwidth costs.
Additionally, Dacast offers event plans as a money-saving option for occasional broadcasts. Event pricing charges for a “bucket” of bandwidth, which you can use anytime within 12 months of purchase. This option is ideal for one-time or occasional events. That way, you won’t worry about wasting bandwidth that you don’t need.
Lastly, current Dacast broadcasters can add the new advanced video hosting platform mentioned above for only $85 per month (with Premium Plan) or $110 per month (with Enterprise plan). For more details on features and pricing, you can read more about Dacast’s newest comprehensive OTT solution.
Vidyard is the next provider of streaming solutions for video hosting we’ll review here. Overall, the Vidyard platform focuses on business and lead generation by offering basic video hosting and streaming services. This OVP offers an all-in-one solution for businesses that includes internal video creation and communication tools.
Vidyard best features
- Integration with marketing automation for email capture
- Analytics dashboard
- A/B testing tool for video thumbnails
- Built-in system for members of the public to upload content
- Features to personalize video splash screens to each user
- Various security features
Overall, Vidyard offers Marketing, Sales, and Support services. Under the Marketing tier, the platform advertises three pricing tiers. The Starter plan costs $150 per month and includes only video hosting and analytics for up to 20 video embeds. At $850 per month, the Plus plan adds more key features and up to 100 video embeds. Finally, Enterprise plans are custom-priced and geared toward very high-budget businesses. Only custom-priced plans offer email and phone support and advanced security features, among other key components.
However, review websites note that the average price of Vidyard is approximately $1,500 per month. Also, you’ll want to consider the $2,000 fee required to activate marketing automation with Vidyard. Overall, Vidyard’s website emphasizes video marketing and selling to generate demand and increase customer engagement.
The Vimeo online video platform originally launched in 2004. In its early years, Vimeo catered mainly to the creative market. In recent years, however, the platform began to shift toward the B2B (business to business) sector. The company now offers a Vimeo OTT solution, following its acquisition of the live streaming provider Livestream in 2017. Overall, this platform caters to large-budget operations and takes a high-end premium approach to its streaming service.
Vimeo best features
- accessible video hosting tools for B2C (business to consumer) customers
- easy video uploading from any device, Google Drive, Dropbox, and FYP
- player customization (*on Premium, Business, PRO and PLUS plans)
- video analytics
- full API and full monetization tools (with high-cost plans only)
Vimeo offers video hosting solutions at several plan levels. For $20/month,* users get basic video hosting (*no live streaming) and 1 TB of uploads per year. At $50/month,* users can upgrade to 5 TB storage and add better analytics (*no live streaming). Live streaming plans start at $75/month and include 7 TB storage and unlimited bandwidth.
For full API access, monetization tools, and other key business streaming features, however, higher-priced Custom plans are available.
Additionally, note that Vimeo users can incur unexpected fees. These include, for example, per-subscriber fees, per PPV transaction fees, per promo code fees, etc.
Founded in Massachusetts in 2006, Wistia provides streaming solutions for video hosting geared for businesses. This platform’s tools focus on driving engagement via video using features like CTAs. Wistia also includes some interesting features, such as built-in video editing tools. However, this online video platform does not support live streaming.
Wistia best features
- Guaranteed smooth playback
- Video SEO and marketing tools
- Analytics dashboard
- API access
- Security features to control access to content
- Integration with HubSpot for workflow automation
Wistia offers three levels of video hosting plans. The Free plan offers only basic access to the service, much like an unlimited free trial. It allows you to upload a maximum of three videos, and includes Wistia branding on your content.
The Pro plan, at $99 per month, removes this branding and targets professionals improving their websites with video content. It includes support for 10 videos, and it allows you to add as many additional videos as you want for 25 cents/month per video. This plan has no Wistia branding.
Finally, the Advanced plan is aimed at larger viewers. This plan includes integration with marketing CRMs, as well as priority support and a number of other features. Pricing is custom-based and depends on your specific needs.
In this article, we’ve reviewed the basic details about five of the best streaming solutions for video hosting available today. We hope you can now narrow down your choices and decide what features are most important to you. The final decision, of course, depends on your particular business needs and resources. For best results, we highly recommend that you go for a platform that also supports live streaming.
Remember, most of the streaming solutions for video hosting offer free trials. Take advantage of this! You can try out several options to determine which one is the best for your business!
Interested to learn more about video hosting and live streaming with Dacast? You can take advantage of the Dacast 30-day free trial (no credit card required) by clicking the button below.
Any questions, comments, or ideas? Let us know in the comment section down below! We love to hear from our readers, and we will get back to you. Finally, for regular tips on live streaming in a community of experts, as well as exclusive offers, you’re invited to join our LinkedIn group.
Thanks for reading, and best of luck with your broadcasts!