According to a new report from Ovum, live sports streaming will represent 53.2% of bundling revenue, rising from just 20.5% in 2019. It is predicted that 5G network bundles will reach US$4.87 billion (€4.32 billion) by 2024, rising from very small beginnings of US$6 million (€5.32 million) this year.
The report, which looks at 5G media bundling opportunities, says that 5G promises to make the mass live-streaming of sports events much more high-definition and reliable than has been possible on mobile networks thus far, and that the premium nature of sports broadcasting makes it apt for hard and soft bundling.
However, the report does also point out that live streaming of sports events requires dedicated bandwidth and that the network slicing required “will not be immediately on tap” at 5G’s launch.
While sports is predicted to be make up the majority of revenues, SVOD will also see growth, rising to 31.9% of revenues by 2024.
Areas that will see a diminished portion of bundling revenue are music subscriptions and cloud gaming.
Guillermo Escofet, principal analyst of media and entertainment at Ovum said: “Business-development execs at carriers have over the past two years or so been asking where the next “killer apps” in telco-OTT bundling partnerships will come from, beyond the current staple of premium video and music streaming services such as Netflix and Spotify. That question has gained more urgency with the advent of 5G.”
“Partnership options in the live-sports streaming space are multiplying, as more OTTs join the fray, including the FAANG giants, and more rights holders go direct to consumer.”
“For carriers with no broadcasting ambitions or not able to secure broadcasting rights, bundling deals with live-sports-streaming OTTs will be the next best thing. And many of the roles that 5G carriers see themselves playing around live sports, such as team/event sponsor, team owner, or event organizer, will be complementary to such partnerships.”