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How does Video on Demand work? AKA VOD

Written by Faria Ibtihaj · 3 min read >


Video on Demand, popularly known as VOD, is regarded as the king of digital media. It is the most reliable when it comes to getting to connect with your audience. In this article, we will take a look at what VOD means and the various formats it can be used.

What is a video on Demand (VOD)?

Video on Demand refers to videos that can be streamed by a viewer at whatever time. The streaming can be done via direct streaming from the source online or when the video downloads the content to watch later.

It is different from traditional broadcasting, when the viewer has to watch videos at a specific time and with the aid of a cable or satellite connection on a device.

From its inception, Video on Demand started with pay-per-view broadcasts of live events and movies over cable and satellite connections. However, it has evolved with digital innovations. VOD now has fast internet and is compatible with mobile devices. 

You can now enjoy high-quality on-demand videos whenever you desire, as long as you have a strong internet connection.

How Video on Demand works?

The platform functions by sending packets of data from servers hosting video content to your video player. VOD providers make use of two mediums to make money, namely: advertising VOD (AVOD) and subscription VOD (SVOD). 

Below are some of the advantages and disadvantages offered by each model of VOD and examples of some services:

AVOD allows viewers to watch content for free. However, there will be pop-up adverts in exchange. You begin to use AVOD when you watch on-demand videos on platforms like YouTube, Crackle, Pluto TV, Xumo, DailyMotion, and so on. 

Interestingly, you can earn some money from these adverts depending on the duration of the ads, the kind of interactive features in the ad, the duration of the ad, if it can be skipped, if users use click through the ad and go through a conversion action, and how attractive your content is to advertisers.

AVOD is designed for customers who do not want to pay money for access to your content. Also, the money you can earn from ad placement is variable depending on the algorithms used by the streaming platform.

SVOD, on the other hand, is a model used by distributors like Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and HBO Max. Unlike the AVOD, users on this model sign up for paid subscriptions that allow users to have access to a large library of VOD whenever and wherever they want. 

Also, you do not receive 3rd-party ads during your viewing experience. Also, it is important to note that some platforms, such as YouTube Premium, are AVOD in their free versions but offer SVOD premium videos without ads.

VOD platforms

Television broadcast networks such as BBC, NBC, and CBS offer Broadcast VOD, where contents that were first broadcast on linear TV are then uploaded online for on-demand streaming.

VOD Applications and How they can be Developed

Video on Demand apps are platforms from which viewers can easily access content in different libraries to stream video on Demand. These apps are available for download on a platform such as AppleTV and Roku. 

Content producers develop several apps to download to connect directly to users and provide them with the best viewing experience. Also, it aids in the collection of data that can be used to optimize target ads.

Before you decide on developing a VOD app, it is essential to identify the features you will want from your on-demand video experience. You will need to consider if you want an AVOD or SVOD strategy and the type of interface you would like your users to experience.

Also, consider if you have enough content to support your channel. Is there a need to incorporate videos and aggregators into your on-demand channel? Is the channel you are putting up something you find interesting?

Once you have an idea of what your app needs to look like and how it should function, you can then create it either through Direct Publishers on the platforms or code it yourself. Also, you can opt to use the help of companies such as VlogBox to develop an for you that can easily be published on platforms such as Roku, Amazon Fire TV store, Apple TV, and so on.

VlogBox is a popular company that works on revenue-share models to provide custom app development, ranging from several factors such as the number of subscribers and quality of content.

What we can expect from the Future of VOD

Research predicts that the market for VOD should grow by over 150% between 2019 to 2025. If this is achieved, VOD will have a compound annual growth rate of 16.02%. With the steady growth in technology, innovations such as high-powered mobile devices and fast internet mean that more users will be engaged in VOD audiences around the world.

VOD platforms

As a result, there is tremendous room for new growth and sufficient space for players, both new and old, in the Video on Demand platform.

At the same time, traditional television is expected to grow at an annual rate of 1.5% between the year 2020 to 2026. This means that if you wish to get involved in video content creation, we recommend VOD to you.


If you desire to build a streaming platform, you are already aware that the video and the live streaming market have seen many great successes as well as failures over the past years. As a result, you can build success with ease on VOD platforms by building on previous successes. However, do not be afraid of encountering challenges, as they can be inevitable in growth.

With the right development consulting team, you would be guided on what goes into your VOD streaming platform development services. Video On Demand streaming has become popular over the past few tears and does not show any sign of slowing down. As a result, we recommend that now is the right time to develop a VOD app. 

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