7 Online Video Streaming Businesses Having Awesome Revenue Model


Cabel-TV businesses are on the verge of becoming old school; online video streaming businesses are trending today. The transfiguration of television from cathode-ray electronic TV, black & white TV, to color TV and latest from cable TV to satellite TV, has been wondrous.

However, somewhere close to this television switchovers, emerged the cosmos of video streaming.

Today, one can watch their favorite shows/videos streamed on-demand straight to their Smart TVs, tablets, laptops, or smartphones in full HD quality. Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Twitch, Direct TV Now, HBO Now, etc are the many video streaming app competitors and each one of them has their unique specialty.

Television that used to be a medium for a family to sit together and watch the news, or get entertained, is losing its significance because family members now watch their favorite shows streamed on their devices. We are not far from the time when television will get lost into the oblivion.

With video streaming business taking a giant leap over television, there is a sound scope for development over this media platform.

As an entrepreneur, you have plenty of options to consider before deciding to develop the best of all video streaming apps. In this blog, we have enclosed the features of these online video streaming businesses and have shown how each one of these apps functions and generates revenue.

If you want to develop a winning app rising amongst the app based online video streaming businesses, you must know what type of app you want to build, what demographic shall it address to, how will it generate revenue and many such inquests. To begin with, let’s start with the types of video streaming apps.

Types of Online Video Streaming Businesses

We have broadly divided the online video streaming platforms into the following four categories:

Apps broadcasting user-generated content

Primarily, there are video streaming apps where the users of the platform are the creators of the content. You shall understand it better as we speak of YouTube & Twitch. The users of YouTube or Twitch have the privilege to create content on these platforms. Other such users can watch the content and can similarly create and broadcast their own content.

Apps streaming original content – Most popular online video streaming businesses

Netflix and Hulu are the superheroes amongst the online video streaming businesses as they provide original content produced by themselves and which is not available elsewhere on the internet. If you own a production house, here is how you go digital and your business can stride to success by streaming original content. Apps like Netflix and Hulu have been appreciated indeed because of their award-winning unique content.

Apps broadcasting live TV and no other content

Another category of video streaming apps is the one which directly streams live TV on the app, for the users who are away from television and do not wish to skip the telecasted serials on TV. DirecTV is one such example of live video streaming business. Apart from broadcasting TV, they do not stream any other content for their viewers. Such apps are clearly- ‘cable cord’ replacements that stream everything of the traditional TV on any of the internet connected devices.

Apps by independent TV networks

Lastly, there are these stand-alone TV networks who develop their own personalized app for on-demand video streaming service. HBO Now is one such example that provides a separate app for video streaming, also streaming original content. However, these apps are mostly available to those who have subscribed to the traditional TV channel.

For you to develop a video streaming app that stands out, it is important to gain insights on the different models of video streaming apps so that you can learn which of their features must be included in your application.

Henceforth, we will study the following 7 online video streaming businesses that are proved to be doing excellent and make an apprehension on their revenue models as well.






DirectTv Now






Prime Video


YouTube TV

Netflix – Top Player Among Online Video Streaming Businesses


Netflix has turned out to be more of a Verb than a Noun.

“Do not disturb, I’m Netflixing”, or “Sorry, I can’t make it to the party, I am Netflixing!”

These have become easy excuses for indulging in the Netflix phenomena.

Netflix is a media-service company, found in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Mark Randolph. Over the years, Netflix is being the most competent online video streaming businesses have attained much of fame and popularity along with success and $4.5 billion in revenue.

Read the success story of Netflix

Today, televisions come with a Netflix button on their TV remote. People are first deciding to binge-watch a series on Netflix, and then choosing which series to watch. This shows how the brand has impacted on viewers’ minds. A major driving factor for this craze is the machine learning (Artificial Intelligence) used by Netflix for content recommendation to viewers as per their personalized choices, and for other things like streaming quality and location scouting.

The smartest move that helped Netflix succeed is its subscription model, which is simple yet extremely effective. Initially, users get a free one-month or 14 days trial and then fees are charged if they continue to watch it after the free-trail.

Another striking feature that helps Netflix be on the top charts of the fame game is its original content. Viewers are going crazy after the video content of Netflix. Moreover, this content of Netflix is either not available outside this platform or it is highly expensive. Instead, a month’s subscription would be preferable.

If you want to create a video streaming app that can beat Netflix, you gotta learn from the Netflix

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What makes people love the Netflix phenomenon is that they can indulge in the content without any interruptions. Ad-free video streaming is the star player. This feature makes Netflix stand out of other video streaming apps. Moreover, this has influenced viewers to binge-watch a series in one sitting.

Accessibility is yet another consistent feature of Netflix that makes its content available on various devices such as mobile phones, laptops, tablets, or over the top on set-up boxes like Roku, Amazon, or Apple TV. As on-demand is the key feature of Netflix, it doesn’t allow recording DVR option of its shows.

The above-said features make Netflix hit the charts of profit-making and even you can make it possible for your video streaming app by adopting these key features.

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Hulu- Complete Original Content Library Provider Among Online Video Streaming Businesses


Hulu is a video on demand streaming service owned by Walt Disney. By this year, Hulu makes around 25 billion subscribers and hits nearly $1.5 billion from ad revenue. It challenges all the other on-demand video streaming businesses in the United States out there of having the maximum number of TV series online, which is over 85000.

To keep up with Netflix, Hulu has taken big strides on its original shows. This video streaming app competitor also provides a Hulu plus Live TV package option, which doesn’t require subscribers to own a cable connection. It just provides Live TV broadcasting along with Hulu Originals.

It broadcasts TV serials very early as compared to Netflix and other streaming apps. Viewers just have to wait for a day to watch their missed TV program. There are 50 hours of Cloud DVR available on Hulu connection if the viewers want to record their favorite shows.

Hulu is available on all android and apple devices, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Google’s Chromecast devices, Fire Tablets, MAC and PC browsers, select LG and Samsung Smart TVs, XBOX one, XBOX 360, and the Nintendo Switch. However, simultaneously only two streams can be seen by viewers on one account or if more streams are needed, there is an add-on available for unlimited simultaneous streams.

Hulu is an ad-based streaming service, but however, it does provide an ad-free streaming package with additional costs. Otherwise, Hulu service is charged on a monthly fee, and several packages are available as per the viewer’s preferences.

This on-demand video streaming platform makes most of its profit from the advertisements and endorsements. Many users who watch the streams daily, pay a subscription fee which contributes to a major source. The app promotes more and more of its viewers to convert into subscribers.

DirecTV Now – Internet TV


Originally a direct broadcast satellite, DirecTV Now was launched in 2016 as an internet streaming TV, as a subsidiary under AT&T. With a total of 1.5 million overall subscribers, it made around $11.3 billion in this year’s first quarter.

This video streaming app competitor provides conventional TV channels for monthly charges but instead over internet streaming devices. DirecTV Now comes with live DVR recording and streaming option.

DirecTV is available to be accessed over a plethora of devices such as iPhone, Android, iPad, Amazon Fire TV, Roku devices, Apple TV, Chromecast in the form of apps and also can be accessed through Google Chrome and Apple Safari browsers. However, it still lags support for Samsung TV, Android TV, XBOX consoles, and PlayStation consoles.

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The standard package for a month allows two devices for simultaneous streaming, whereas an extra 3rd device can get streams by paying $5 additionally. This platform actually works like the cable providers because it only broadcasts the channels where the viewers are located (based on your IP address). If the subscriber is out of town, he/she cannot get access to local channels.

Just like the cable and satellite TV, DirecTV does constitute commercial breaks between live feeds. Ads are a big part of this platform to keep the prices down. Being a TV streaming app, it does not provide original content of its own, and rather just broadcasts the content of conventional cable channels online.

So clearly, DirecTv Now is a type of video streaming app that can be considered as a cable cord replacement app. Today, when everything is made available online, why not TV? Surely, this can be considered as an ala carte of TV channels to pay only for those you watch anytime, anywhere you want on demand.

Twitch – More User Generated Content


Twitch is the live video streaming platform, specifically game and sports streaming to be precise, which is owned by Amazon. This video streaming app competitor falls under the category of user-generated content broadcasting.

Gaming is an experience that induces the player within and it is even addictive. Not only for the players, but it is also even enticing for the viewers of the game, who watch others playing the game. Twitch works on this principle of the Game addiction and makes money by streaming live gaming and sports competitions.

The videos for Twitch are created by the gamers mostly. They live-stream their gaming experience along with commentaries, and so even gamers earn money through Twitch. Viewers can also chat in real-time with the players.

Twitch hosts each & every kind of games and sports tournaments. Viewers can freely watch the streaming games and other content on Twitch without registration, while broadcasting requires free registration for the gamers.

Currently, Twitch has over 2.2 billion daily broadcasters and 15 million viewers of game streaming. Last year marked 2.2 billion subscribers on the Twitch platform.

The Twitch content can be accessed through PCs, smartphones, and gaming consoles by using dedicated apps and web-browsers. For the content producers i.e. the gamers, Twitch provides a dedicated software for streaming videos, and APIs and SDK for integrating Twitch with web-apps and game devices.

Twitch has three ways to generate money. Advertisements, subscriptions, and partners. There are 13 ad units on the Twitch platform and advertisers need to pay a certain amount of fee to flash their advertisement. Secondly, those who subscribe to Twitch streaming service are spared of any advertisement. Hence, they pay to Twitch a monthly subscription fee. Thirdly, Twitch runs a partner program for the streamers where they affiliate with Twitch and any video they stream makes them earn a part of value generated by the ads on their channel.

This way, Twitch is a different species of video streaming app competitor and also runs an effective business revenue model which benefits from both the streamers and viewers. Not only that, it has created a platform for gamers to earn a full-time job just by playing and streaming games.

HBO NOW – Premuim Cabel And Satelite TV Network


Launched in 2015, HBO Now is America’s premium cable and satellite TV network operator’s (HBO’s) subscription video on demand platform that made $13 billion revenue. It requires no cable connection for watching videos.

Users need an Apple device to first register with HBO Now account and then they can watch video streams through any other device supported or on the browsers. This video streaming app competitor has more than 5 million subscribers; major attraction towards this app is its overwhelmingly famous original series Game of Thrones. Even other HBO originals have earned much popularity and globally acclaimed entertainment awards.

HBO Now avails a 30-day free trial for viewers before any commitment to the network service. Thereafter, if they wish to continue, they need to subscribe. The major difference between HBO Now and HBO GO (another video streaming service provides by HBO network) is that HBO Now doesn’t require a cable connection for the service. Also, HBO Now is comparatively cheaper than HBO GO service.

HBO Now has gathered the much ado because of its binge-watching allowance. However, simultaneously one account can stream from 3 different devices at the same time, not more.

Viewers can access HBO through a varied range of devices from Amazon Kindle Fire Tablets, Apple TV, Android TV, Chromecast, web browsers, Roku, Samsung Smart TV, iPhone, Xbox One, and Xbox 360.

How HBO Now makes money is the trap that every viewer is happy to fall into. It earns its revenue mostly by the subscription fees that viewers are ready to pay. The quality and service that HBO is providing to its subscribers are worth it. They pay $15 a month as a subscription fee to watch their favorite shows on demand. Rest of the cut they get is from the advertisements that preroll before the shows or movies.

Amazon Prime – With Benefit of Fastest & Free Delivery


Amazon announced its new video streaming service in 2005 and by 2017, Amazon reports Prime to attain over 100 million subscribers making revenue above $6 billion.

Amazon Prime users need to subscribe to watch and rent digital movies and TV shows. The prime video can be accessed through smart TVs, Blu-ray players, Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, Android & iOS devices, set-up boxes & gaming consoles like Roku & Xbox, Fire Tablets, and Fire Phones.

The Amazon Prime package comes with all the sunshine out there. The best part is it comes with the fastest & free delivery of within 2 days along with various other benefits on Amazon services and products such as free audiobooks, free first Kindle books, Alexa deals, free whole foods delivery, etc.

Prime video produces original content of its own which is highly valued by users. It comes for $12.99 per month or annually $119.

At the max, there can be only 2 simultaneous streams broadcasting videos on one Amazon account. Amazon Prime makes its profit through user’s subscriptions and through ads.

Well yes, there is no alternative other than ads to watch the amazon prime streaming content.

Though this service is found to be pricey by many, yet looking at the all other benefits that Amazon Prime provides, it is not a high price to avail all the goodies.

YouTube TV – Unlimited Cloud DVR Recording


Recently, even Google launched its video streaming app competitor, YouTube TV which is full-fledged with live TV streaming, video on demand, original content, and unlimited DVR recording. It costs $50 per month without any contract. It provides 70 channels and depending on your locality also provides local networks.

Within two years of its launch in 2017, YouTube TV has surpassed 1 million subscribers and has been capable to make $15 billion.

YouTube TV can be accessed through Apple TV, Android TV, Roku, Xbox One family, and through mobile apps. At a time, 6 streams can be viewed by one YouTube TV account. So you can enjoy this service along with your friends and family.

The star element that Google comes up with is the unlimited cloud DVR feature. Meaning, YouTube TV subscribers can download any number of live streams and video content. Moreover, not only one but all the six account holders can save individually their favorite content for watching later. This feature is something that no other video streaming app competitor provides.

However, there is no escape to YouTube ads here. Unlike Ad-free YouTube and YouTube Red apps, YouTube TV doesn’t come with ad-escape. So clearly, this video streaming app pays all its bills through the ad revenue and the revenue generated through its big fat subscription fees.

It’s Time To Join The Market of Online Video Streaming Businesses

Well, looking upon the various online video streaming businesses, as an Entrepreneur you might have got a striking unique point for your streaming business.

Sure you want to take the best of above all and provide your users the best on-demand video streaming experience. However, you don’t inherit artificial intelligence like Netflix to predict how your business will take turns.

Each business has a different critique point. You need to strategize for your business specifically and just cannot copy any other successful business’ model. You would have to consider the demographics for your targeted prospects and deep market research before landing your foot in the industry.

Don’t eat your heart out thinking about the challenges you might face in your video streaming business. Just take your phone and dial us a ring!

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Vishal Nakum

Vishal Nakum is a tech enthusiast with a passion for exploring the latest developments in the world of technology. He has a keen interest in emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Blockchain, and enjoys keeping up-to-date with the latest trends and advancements in these fields. Vishal is an avid learner and is always on the lookout for new ways to expand his knowledge and skills. He is also a creative thinker and enjoys experimenting with new ideas and concepts. In his free time, Vishal enjoys playing video games and reading books on technology and science.