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Bold Media Predictions, Part 2

by: Joshua Weinreich | December 21, 2020

Getting You Ready for 2021

In my last blog, I gave you 3 of my media predictions for 2021, which, let me tell you, generated some interesting back-channel conversations on LinkedIn. Today I’m closing out my 2021 predictions by extrapolating the futurism out of 3 additional patterns I’m noticing in our media orbit. Without further adieu, here are my remaining predictions:

4. As the SVOD Churns

Too many DTC streaming companies are not creating enough value in terms of content to build brand loyalty and entice subscribers to stay on board. With little happening in the outside world to occupy our time, there’s more time to scrutinize shows and become content critics. Fodder for Zoom calls is often what’s hot (or not) on Netflix.Viewers with tighter budgets are becoming more accepting of free, ad-supported programming. Some content providers, like Quibi, never found their footing. Covid-19 has triggered cost cutting for millions of Americans who are carefully budgeting their unemployment earnings. And we all know someone who binge-watches programming like Mandalorian on Disney+ for a month will cancel their subscription when the month ends. In Q1, canceled subscriptions were up 6% from the same quarter in 2019, according to research firm Parks Associates. Deloitte found that 17% of consumers canceled a subscription from the point at which Covid-19 began.

5. Aggregation Nation

I predict that 2021 will see a serious merging of SVODs, with Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and Hulu remaining as the key players. Are there enough Anglophiles out there to justify Acorn, BritBox, and BBC services, rather than one centralized channel of UK-based content? With the fandom crossover in the geek market, would it make more sense to have a dedicated “geek channel” that includes fantasy, science fiction and horror programming in a centralized fashion? 

6. 5G—The Quantum Leap for Connectivity

Once 5G becomes available, consumers will have faster access to more content—5G is 100 times faster than 4G. You know that 2-hour HD movie that took you several minutes to download? It will take seconds with 5G. Remote workers will no longer feel the drag on their computing speed when their resident gamer logs on. Cable companies, which rely more on broadband cable earnings for their profits over TV content, will no longer be necessary for streaming. And the promise of AR (augmented reality) will be realized, making previous attempts from just a few years ago feel embarrassingly unsophisticated and outdated.

So…these are 3 of my 6 predictions for 2021. In case you missed my first 3 predictions, you can check them out here. Cheers to you as we embark upon 2021 and kick this annus horribilis, a.k.a. 2020, to the curb.