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When it comes to video, more publishers are betting on mobile web versus apps

Outside of social platforms, people are more likely to watch mobile video on the web versus apps — and publishers are adapting.

Video viewership inside mobile apps has been going down for several years now, according to video tech firm JW Player. In the last 10 months of 2016, the share of mobile video viewing occurring inside apps declined to 5 percent from 8 percent, according to a sample of 500,000 websites within JW Player’s network. The company expects the trend to continue in 2017 as fewer publishers invest time and money on video apps. That remains the domain of TV broadcasters, big publishers and pure video companies like HBO, Reuters and Fullscreen.

“If you take a step back to where we were in 2010, there was a massive shift to building native apps,” said Dave Otten, CEO of JW Player. “Facebook had heavily invested in HTML5, so as a result, all of these media companies — no matter what their business was — began investing in building native apps for iOS and Android. Since then, there have been a small number of big winners. People use five to six apps per day; everyone else gets almost no play. For media companies that invested so much money in building apps, the return has been fairly limited.”

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