The Screen Evolution

The rapid evolution of OTT services and the VOD industry has begun to catch the eye of regulators across Asia, a few of whom are advocating for greater legal control over OTT services. Some have proposed light-touch regulations or guidelines that take into account the unique characteristics of these services within the larger context of the internet. Others have decided to treat VOD platforms similar to other traditional communication and media distribution companies, and oblige them to adhere to similar regulatory frameworks.

Much of the new regulatory initiatives come at a time when OTT services are not yet widely understood in Asia. This creates the risk that new regulations could inadvertently jeopardize the innovation potential of a nascent growth industry with significant benefits for consumers and the media industry as well as several positive spillover effects for society at large.

To capture the burgeoning benefits of the VOD industry in Asia, this report offers a range of data points to broaden the public understanding of the unique features of VOD platforms. These data points highlight the importance of continued consumer access to these services, and the need to explore their innovation potential. The goal of this report is to ensure that any country-specific regulations that may be implemented remain in sync with global precedents, as well as the industry’s economic strength and the benefits it delivers to societies in Asia. Drawing on a survey of over 1,300 VOD users in Thailand, Taiwan and India, as well as case studies and interviews with industry experts, this report uses a comprehensive framework to describe these benefits. It also offers guidance on policy reforms for the VOD market, based on a global overview of regulatory best practices.

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