The State of Corporate Video 2019
This ability to adapt services to the structure of clients' internal networks as part of their deployment and maintenance offering are a big advantage for corporates who fear poor network performance.
However, Panopto may struggle with rapid growth as it has a much smaller worldwide presence than most of the other companies in the quadrant having both fewer customers overall and very little presence in both Asia/Pacific and Latin America. Whether their recent commitment to these areas and the offer of more dedicated support will help them to grow the business remains to be seen.
With the focus on internal comms there is a heavy degree of integration with other existing platforms, but this means that on the flip side there is much less focus on sales and marketing use cases. This means a lack of functionality based on sales acceleration and personalised video when compared to other platforms such as Kaltura. This may not be a problem if they can dominate the sectors in which they are strong, but it may inhibit growth overall.
Qumu, a former leader in the quadrant, seems to have lost some ground to competitors in the last few years. They provide a wider range of options with the ability to deliver video to virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), including both Citrix and VMware. In addition, Qumu, like Panopto, has a strong ability to optimise traffic across the corporate network by using live multicast and its own ECDN technology. Given the lack of ECDN partnership options, this can be limited to only a couple of solutions.
Qumu's use of multiple pricing models also creates significant complexity for customers, a not unusual side effect of EVPs' pricing models in general. This seems particularly pronounced with Qumu, however, as they use unusual models such as a per-server pricing model in on-prem deployments. As with some of the other providers a lack of a visible product roadmap was cited in the Gartner survey as a concern for clients as there is a perceived slow pace of innovation and improvement to the existing platform.
MediaPlatform, the final company in the quadrant, has a flexible deployment model of cloud, on-prem, and hybrid as well as many network delivery methods allowing for segmentation of app and content delivery. This enables them to tick the boxes when it comes to network congestion concerns. Gartner viewed the overall product offering as one of the strongest in the quadrant based on a mixture of video capture and collaboration integrations, real-time analytics, security, and compliance measures aimed at certain regulated industries. Customer services was also perceived to be of a very high quality amongst clients.
The platform's network of service providers and solution integrator partners is not as extensive as those of the majority of its competitors which may be a concern for buyers who need additional services and support in regions with no or few partners. MediaPlatform's limited global presence with operations in only EMEA and North America means that prospective buyers in Asia/Pacific or Latin America may be concerned that they will not receive the necessary sales and product support required, as MediaPlatform has no meaningful presence in those regions.
In a similar vein to Qumu, customers expressed concern about the lack of innovation and visibility of the company's roadmap which could be a barrier to potential new customers engaging with the company despite the perceived high quality of the platform.
Outside of the magic quadrant there are now new entrants into this market which offer high levels of credibility in terms of brand and in some cases a freemium business model. Are these companies really rivals to the existing incumbents or have they come in too late to grab a piece of the pie?
The primary new entrant is Microsoft's Streams and Teams. As a fundamental addition to the Teams element of Office 365, Streams is available for free with the ability to add more functionality for a small per-user, per-month cost. The basic internal streaming from the desktop functionality is solid, if not particularly novel or new. However, the strength of being part of existing software that is already in situ within many organisations (120 million installs worldwide) should make it a no brainer purchase for a significant number of organisations. As a freemium product it is likely to grab a significant portion of the low value market putting increased pressure on the smaller OVP and EVP offerings.
With the considerable resources of Microsoft behind it, and some large organisations having already adopted it, we are likely to see Streams and Teams begin to make progress in capturing market share next year. This is particularly true when it comes to internal corporate comms and if network management and optimisation is added to the functionality then it could be a knock-out blow for some of the smaller providers.
A more disruptive element in the market, particularly when it comes to the marketing, sales, and thought leadership space is LinkedIn. With a total user base of around 590 million and 260 million active user per month as of June 2018 the platform has considerable reach.
Having launched member videos back in 2017 with little fanfare, this year LinkedIn expanded the range of video products available on the platform to include in timeline video advertising and more importantly company page video. The latter allows organisations to post on-demand video into their page's timeline, offering an alternate channel to the website based OVP or EVP for external customer comms.
At the moment LinkedIn is considered simply as an additional distribution channel, although with live video streaming being mooted as a feature to be added in 2019 there is the potential for the platform to transform from distribution channel to a primary live webcasting channel for sales and marketing. The effectiveness and reach of the platform will very much depend on its functionality and reliability. If this is strong then it will have a particularly strong pull in the B2B market as there is no dedicated platform for distribution of Live B2B content with such a significant audience.
Whether existing EVPs will move quickly to integrate LinkedIn functionality remains to be seen, and we still don't have an idea of what form the live functionality will take. Depending on those two factors LinkedIn could become an alternative video channel with tight integration for most corporates or a significant platform which is a major rival to those EVPs who offer more sales and marketing-based functionality.
With at least two new players coming into the market the real pressure is likely to be felt by those platforms outside of the Gartner Magic Quadrant as their margins are potentially squeezed by free services from LinkedIn and the freemium offering from Microsoft. If Microsoft begins to make progress with Streams and Teams at the large corporate end of the market, then that will only heap more pressure on those in the Magic Quadrant.
Given this environment we may see either an acquisition or merger between two of the bigger players in 2019 to bolster market share and achieve some essential economies of scale. Whether this kind of consolidation can help maintain the position of those in the Magic Quadrant however remains to be seen.
Even though video is thriving behind the firewall and companies are finding new ways to succeed with streamed content, signs point to rocky waters ahead for online video platforms.
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