Today’s empowered customers demand premium and personalized content that is available ubiquitously and delivered seamlessly. With the advent of OTT Video delivery, consumption on mobile devices has increased significantly and it is predicted to grow at a much high rate over the coming years. Ericsson mobility reports1 predict 48% CAGR through 2023 with Video volume traffic taking over 75% of data traffic. Therefore, there is mounting pressure on mobile networks to deliver more video.
As more users adapt to OTT Video streaming services, it is putting a strain on mobile networks and forcing Telcos to upgrade their infrastructure. Augmenting network resources is a slow process; meeting the demand for increase in video traffic is becoming a challenge. This is leading to user-experience getting impacted by video stalling and buffering. Availability of 4K, 8K and VR content is further adding to the overall congestion.
Per MUX.com2 reports, one buffering event decreases the amount of video watched by 39%, i.e., 4 people out of 10 leave the service, thereby impacting the MVPD. Also, an increase in bandwidth due to 5G may not suffice. The following narrative describes the network factors affecting user experience and the mechanisms to minimize them.
Impact on Network for OTT Video Delivery:
As the number of users increases, the bandwidth per user decreases, which results in video buffering and stalls. The network parameters causing video buffering and Video stalls primarily are latency, Packet loss, and buffer bloats.
As video streaming uses TCP, latency, packet loss causes retransmissions, which reduce the effective bandwidth. With many of the network nodes using big transmission, buffers further aggravate when congestions happen. Packet loss and retransmissions are a direct result. For mobile networks, the sources of latency are at the Mobile edge (RAN), packet core and the external IP Cloud.