Ad-Supported Streaming Services

Part
01
of three
Part
01

Ad-Supported Streaming Services - Rows 4-6

Rows 4 – 6 of the attached spreadsheet have been filled out with all the requested information for Tubi TV, Roku Channel, and Vudu TV. Data about content hours was only available for Tubi TV, while Roku Channel provided the total hours streamed, in the place of content hours available.

TUBI TV

ROKU CHANNEL

  • Roku Channel was established in October 2017.
  • Roku Channel offers freemium and premium services. For instance, HBO is available for $14.99/month, while Starz charges $8.99/month.
  • Roku Channel is available on Roku players and TVs, Roku channel website, Roku mobile app, and Samsung smart TV, which, unfortunately, does not support premium subscription.
  • The streaming platform offers movies, shows, live and on-demand streaming, and has over 500 channels.
  • Roku Channel's year-over-year revenue figure as of August 2019 was $252.5 million.

VUDU TV

RESEARCH STRATEGY

The respective websites, business reports, and news articles featured comprehensive data to fill out the three rows 4-6. However, data specific to content hours was not readily available. To find the missing data, we began by going through each website, specifically the media section where such information is likely posted. Unluckily, we could not find any details about content hours for Roku Channel and Vudu TV. There were lots of information regarding the company and its products and services, but none on content hours. For the case of Roku Channel, we found information about their total hours streamed, which is irrelevant in this case.

Next, we expanded our search to external sources. Our focus was on business and technology reports that often provide such statistics. These types of reports feature in-depth information on streaming companies and digital media companies in general. Therefore, we decided to explore various tech-related websites such as TechCrunch, PC Magazine, Lifewire, Digday, etc., but still found no meaningful data. Most of these reports focused more on the statistics around membership and the total number of movies and TV channels in each database. The reports did not even include details regarding the total number of streamed hours in the case of Vudu TV.

Third, we decided to examine tech review websites such as Diffen and application stores such as Google Play. These types of sources often provide side-to-side comparative analyses of these platforms. We found a review that compared Netflix to Vudu TV, but it still did not feature the specific information on content hours.
Part
02
of three
Part
02

Ad-Supported Streaming Services - Rows 7-9

All the available, requested information about IMDb TV, Xumo, and Crackle is included in the attached spreadsheet.

Findings

1. IMDb TV

  • IMDb TV launched in January 2019 as IMDb Freedive, but was renamed IMDb TV in June 2019 (we listed the June date in the spreadsheet).
  • IMDb TV is free.
  • We could not find information about IMDb TV's content hours, number of users, number of channels, revenue, or funding. We included the number of movies and shows that it offers as a proxy for the number of channels.

2. Xumo

3. Crackle

Your Research Team Applied the Following Strategy:

For the data points that we weren't able to find, we looked for that information in three different ways. First, we looked for any available articles specifying such information. Those articles were published by sources such as Business Insider and Variety, among others. While there were articles about each of these streaming services, we ultimately couldn't find the data points noted above in any of the many articles that we reviewed. Second, we searched the streaming services' websites to see if the information we were looking for was published there. While those websites contained other relevant information that we included in our research findings, the data points specified above were not discussed on these websites. As a third strategy, we looked on other types of third-party sites such as Google Play, as we thought that perhaps this information might have been included there since it wasn't available in traditional articles. However, we didn't find any of the specified information on those third-party sites either. With regard to the information that we were able to find, most of that information came from published articles and the streaming services' websites.
Part
03
of three
Part
03

Ad-Supported Streaming Services - Rows 10-12

Popcornflix has 15 million active users; Classic Cinema Online gets a monthly average visit of 210,400; and SnagFilms, also known as ViewLift, has raised a total of $44.9 million in funding. The detailed findings have been provided in the spreadsheet attached, and below are some highlights of our findings.

POPCORNFLIX

  • Popcornflix was launched in March 2011 and was acquired by Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment (CSS Entertainment) in 2017 by buying its parent company, Screen Media Ventures.
  • Popcornflix's app has been downloaded over 27 million times across different distribution channels, and the service has 15 million active users.
  • The video-on-demand content library of CSS Entertainment, which powers Popcornflix, has 37,000 hours of programming.

CLASSIC CINEMA ONLINE

SNAGFILMS

  • SnagFilms raised $8 million for ViewLift, its own digital distribution platform for live streaming and on-demand content.
  • According to its CEO, Rick Allen, although the company was founded as SnagFilms, it is now known as ViewLift.
  • SnagFilms' streaming service is powered by ViewLift.
  • ViewLift/SnagFilms has raised a total of $44.9 million in funding.

HELPFUL FINDINGS

  • Classic Cinema Online's content categories are movies, series, and silent films.
  • There are 31 content categories on SnagFilms, and these are award winners, classic movies, politics, foreign films, music, drama, festival favorites, comedy, arts & culture, cult classics, sports, health & food, thrillers, LGBT, crime, military & war, biography, science & environment, documentary, history, kids & family, Latino, celebrity stories, horror, action, faith & spirituality, romance, animation, short films, science fiction, and African movies.
  • SnagFilms has more than 2,000 films, TV show episodes, documentaries, and original comedy shorts.

RESEARCH STRATEGY

To find the requested information on Popcornflix, Classic Cinema Online, and SnagFilms, we looked into each of their respective websites as a starting point. Using this strategy, we were able to find some information, but not the funding, content hours available, revenue, the number of users, and the number of channels of these streaming services.

Next, for the missing information, we looked into their annual reports and 10-K SEC filing, though we understand that private companies are not obligated to publish their annual reports. Fortunately, we were able to access CSS Entertainment's 10-K SEC filing, Popcornflix's parent company. We also looked into company databases like Crunchbase and Owler for SnagFilms and Classic Cinema Online as they provide financial information, like revenue and funding, about private companies; third-party press releases for coverage of any funding; and news articles about the streaming services in the hope that they contain some of the information we were looking for. Using this strategy, we were able to find some information, but not all the revenue, funding, and the number of users and channels. 

Lastly, we looked for proxy information. Detailed below are all the proxy information we entered in the spreadsheet.
  • Popcornflix revenue: CSS Entertainment has three business segments: online networks, television and film distribution, and television and short-form video production. Popcornflix falls into the online networks segment, and the revenue of the said segment in 2018 was $4.41 million. However, this amount includes earning from YouTube streaming of the company's films and the acquisition of Pivotshare. Further breakdown of the revenue is not available, so we put <$4.41 million in the corresponding cell for the revenue of Popcornflix in the spreadsheet attached.
  • Popcornflix funding: Information on the Popcornflix's funding could not be located in the public domain. There were no press releases, news articles, and records from company databases like Crunchbase and Owler about the funding of either Popcornflix or Screen Media Ventures dated before and after Screen Media Ventures was acquired by CSS Entertainment in 2017. However, CSS Entertainment raised $30 million in 2017; and, according to their 10-K SEC filing, they may raise additional funds in the future. In lieu of Popcornflix's funding information, we entered its parent company's $30 million funding raised in 2017.
  • Number of users: SnagFilms' and Classic Cinema Online's number of users are not available in the public domain, so we used a website analytics tool to check the number of visitors the streaming services get on their desktop and mobile websites. We found that SnagFilms gets an average of 1.74 million monthly visits and Classic Cinema Online 210,400 visits. We entered these figures as the streaming services' number of users.
  • Classic Cinema Online's launch date: We could not locate the launch date of Classic Cinema Online anywhere in the public domain, so we used a tool to determine when the website was created. We entered the date we found as the launch date of the service.

However, even after exhaustive research, we could not find the content hours available, the number of channels, revenue, and funding of Classic Cinema Online. The lack of information about Classic Cinema Online could be because the website is run by a single person and not a company. For SnagFilms, we could not locate its total content hours available and its number of channels; however, we found some relevant information and added them as helpful findings above. For the requested information we didn't find, we put N/A in their corresponding rows in the spreadsheet.
Sources
Sources