A Comprehensive Guide To Custom OTT Development : Market, Features and Cost

Sudeep Srivastava May 29, 2024
OTT Video App Development Basics Types, Market, Features, & Cost

When was the last time you had to sit across your television and wait for your favorite show to broadcast? 

You might not remember the waiting, since it’s been years we have been binge watching on OTT platforms. Over the past decade, the media and entertainment sector has undergone a digital revolution. The demand for quick streaming media has skyrocketed with adaptability to every content. Now, the audience needs on-demand personalized content based on individual preference, which is why the OTT platforms are the biggest hit of the decade. 

Consumer preferences, evolving technologies, and external factors such as the pandemic have given rise to the wave of OTT software and app development. Why? 

Because the OTT (Over-the-top) platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Web Series, Facebook, YouTube, HBO, Apple Tv and similar streaming services simplify the operational infrastructure and focus on the brand and storytelling. These OTT streaming platforms have brought in unbelievable engagement to every household. Take a look:


Currently, over 68% of the households in the US have daily access to OTT services where people utilize content  at least 100 minutes every day. With this being established, it is time for businesses to tap into the potential of OTT platform development including OTT software and app development. 

Therefore, If you are a business owner, looking to invest in custom OTT development, this guide familiarizes you with in and out aspects of OTT app development including OTT video streaming app development features and factors, OTT app development cost and how you can align your marketing strategies with current on-demand streaming services.

Before we start, you would want to explore: 

Video streaming app development cost and features 

Let’s begin:

With over 68% of the households in the US utilizing OTT services, it’s time for you to build an OTT app

What are OTT services? 

Over-the-top services refer to the practice of transmitting content over internet connection rather than traditional distribution channels such as cable, broadcasters, IPTV providers etc. 

With OTT services, users just have to plug-in a device, download an OTT software or app and that is it. If you have ever lost a few hours or even days on your favorite series on Prime, Netflix, or Hulu, you have already had your rendezvous with the concept. 

Why Do Customers Prefer OTT Over Traditional Platforms? 

It is not surprising to see the OTT range, especially the weekly OTT application range, has grown up to 20 hours. Why is that? Here are the top three reasons why OTT is appealing to its viewers:

  1. Accessibility– With OTT services, the audience is accustomed to watching what it wants and how it wants, irrespective of the location. 
  2. Control- The audience is willing to pay more to have a distinctive control over programs. Which is why, over 50% of the users have multiple subscriptions to OTT services to customize their content.  
  3. Cost- Studies suggest that a major chunk of viewers believes that the cost of paying for television and cables is relatively higher with less accessibility and control. 

Due to these three reasons, businesses can see a shifting pattern in user behavior for OTT services. Now, If you want to look at the behavior pattern of the companies, here’s how business professionals define OTT services: 


As you can see, over 50% of the companies are familiar with the whereabouts of OTT platform services. However, to get started, you would need more discreet research on the OTT app development market.

Current Market Standing on OTT Platform Development

Now, If you want to get started with OTT platform development, here’s what you need to understand about the streaming platform market. 

  • According to recent surveys, the majority of US consumers (over 80%) have signed up for at least one OTT platform service. The demographic of these subscribers ranges from millennials to Gen X to early boomers. 
  • There are over 200 OTT providers in the U.S. (Digiday)
  • As per the research of eMarketer, more than 235 million people in the US (accounting for 70% of the total population), have video streaming services on their mobile devices to stream content. 
  • Moreover, the revenue in the OTT video segment is expected to reach nearly $275.30 billion by the end of 2022. Similarly, the user penetration that is currently at 42.9% is soon projected to hit 53.0% by the year 2027, that is approximately 4216.3 million users. 
  • This one is going to hit you like a storm, the largest segment in OTT video advertising is estimated to have a market volume of nearly $180.40 billion by 2022 end. 

You can get a sense of the extent of OTT software development with the statistics mentioned above. This answers how Movie streaming apps are redefining the entertainment industry

The OTT video streaming development share doesn’t end at these percentages. We will keep looking into graphs and statistics all throughout the article. 

Now, let’s get to the active OTT service options available for you. 

What Types of OTT Services Are Presently Active in the Market?

The OTT market growth that is presently being charted, especially since the massive Netflix revolution which is continuously evolving. However, OTT app development is just not restricted to video streaming services, here are the current OTT development alternatives available in the market: 

  • Video
  • Audio
  • VOIP
  • Messaging

As we know, among these four types of OTT services, the one that has surfaced on the forefront the most is the Video OTT segment. The reasoning behind placing a special focus on OTT streaming platforms is a little partial – we are very intrigued by its market size. 

Coming to the video streaming app development, here are three major types of OTT app development services available in the market: 

  1. Services-based OTT service 
  2. OTT platform for content and communication
  3. OTT in form devices

Types of OTT Apps

For now, let’s leave you with this one thought – OTT platform development is what made businesses the “leaders” in their respective OTT segment. 

Business Leaders in OTT Platform Development and The OTT Verses

Your name can be one of them. In fact, the intention of this guide is to prepare you for your successful time under the OTT app development light. One step towards that future is understanding what the concept means and the next is knowing how it is different from words that are often used synonymously with OTT software streaming services. 


Let’s look at the popular OTT verses: 

1. OTT vs VOD

It is very easy to get confused between the two, especially since both of them work around on-demand video at their heart. And also because OTT is a subset of Video on Demand (VOD). The core difference is that the latter works only on an internet connection. VOD, on the other hand, requires either a satellite or internet to work.


The difference in Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD) and Ads Supported Video on Demand (AVOD) is a difference of business models. 

SVOD is the model where users get access to video content after paying an x amount every month or fixed time range. AVOD is one which is entirely free. It doesn’t charge any amount from the users for access. The only catch is that it makes users sit through ads. 

This is the exact stage where you are now ready to get started with the ground-level discussions about Over the Top (OTT) applications. 

ott platform development services

8 Must Have Features You Need in OTT Software and App Development

Must Have Features For OTT Platform Development

OTT video streaming development is technically the delivery of multimedia on the net without the utilization of any system where the content is directly distributed to customers. The bypassing framework has the limit of what to broadcast across the web to the consumers.

If you are new to OTT app development and have a little idea of the OTT improvement process, you can partner with a dedicated OTT app development company with relevant expertise and pertinent skill. Make sure you settle on your decision carefully to get the value of your money.

While your OTT platform development company will guide you through out the features you require in your OTT app development, here is a comprehensive list of the must-have OTT development features to check out: OTT software and app development asks for features 

1. Multilingual content

For you to reach a wider demographic and expand business beyond the geographical borders your core user base are housed in, it is of prime importance that you add more languages’ video content besides English. 

From this one move alone, Netflix was able to bag over million users, with an increase in 150 million+ video streaming hours.

2. Watchlist

The next must-have part of OTT video streaming application would be the Watchlist functionality. This is the part where the users would add things that they wish to watch later.  

One way you can get them on this part of the application is through a notification mechanism that would remind them to watch the series.

3. Search

An Explore or Search option is a must have in OTT streaming platforms. The option should be designed in a way that it is visible for all age groups. Also, try to have as many genre options in the search drop-down menu as possible.

4. User profile

This one feature is a no-brainer. Your application must come with a user profile option which gives them the option to manage their side of the application – the content they want to watch, the preferred payment option and suggestions based on their viewing history. 

Also, if you are planning to take the Netflix route of adding more users in the application, have multiple screens in the app, with each user being given their set of OTT platform features.

5. Social features

If you ask any sound OTT app development company, they will tell you how social features are a pivotal part of the whole OTT experience. They are what makes an application shareable and helps in achieving a daily active user target.

You should give your users an option to share their view activity on social media with their network. Also, there should be a social media login provision to make onboarding easy.

6. Screen mirroring

Screen Mirroring

According to experts, in order to increase the user engagement count, it would be beneficial if your users are able to access the application on screens other than their mobile apps, like their TV or Desktop, etc. There are two ways to implement this feature and offer your OTT apps for mobile and TV devices:

  • Through Google Cast SDK
  • The screen mirroring option with AirPlay – an alternative to Google Cast, which works just with Apple TV and the linked iOS apps.

7. In-app purchases

The last pivotal not-to-miss feature is OTT in-app purchases. Integrating payment gateways and several app money making strategies is the most essential feature to include in your OTT app development process.

Using this feature, you will be able to give the ease and seamlessness of money transfer to your app users. 

You might also want to explore: How much money can you earn through an app?

The functionality becomes all the more must-have when you choose to go with the SVOD and TVOD monetization model like how the top OTT companies like Netflix and Hulu have.

8. Payment Integration 

Integration with a payment gateway is one of the critical factors for OTT platform development.  It comprises the final step taken by the user when he makes a decision on buying a premium plan or subscribing your content within the OTT platform. 

This has an immense importance as the users may all of a sudden change their mind, right at the end of their buying decision. So, it is advisable that a Payment Gateway need to be integrated with the OTT app.

Top OTT Monetization Strategy for OTT Platform Development

You would want to know how businesses make money using app development. There are three primal OTT video streaming monetization models that are followed by the top OTT companies:


Subscription Video on Demand: Under this model, your users will be able to view the entire range of your video content offering in return for recurring fees that they will have to pay. 


Transactional Video on Demand: The monetization model asks users to pay per view. Here your users will not have to pay anything at the time of log-in. They will be paying a sum on the basis of the series that they wish to watch. 


Ad-Supported Video on Demand: This is majorly an ad-centric digital video service which is absolutely free for the users. Under this model, the revenue of advertisement is used for offsetting production, hosting, and content monetization. 

ott app development

6 Steps for Successful OTT Software and App Development

To create a video streaming app or develop an OTT application, you need to choose the technology stack first. This will incorporate picking the correct server, streaming protocol, and security frameworks.

6 Steps for Successful OTT Software and App Development

 Let’s know the steps that should be followed for successful creation of OTT apps:

1. Select a niche

OTT video streaming app development is a general idea, and you should choose first what niche you will be following when entering this industry. To win a packed market space – going specialty specific is the key.

2. Develop content inventory

Since content is the genuine foundation of an OTT video application – you cannot overlook an inventory of content that you will stream on it after its launch. Also make sure that content must be stunning, since the heart of any OTT video app is its content.

3. Choose your business model

OTT administrations utilize three types of plans of action, i.e. Advertising-based, subscription, and transactional model. Your application idea will propose which business model you should utilize. These models have their own benefits and drawbacks.

4. Create your website

At the point when you know which plan of action you will follow, it’s currently an ideal opportunity to make the first module of your OTT entertainment app development services, i.e. your website. All things considered, your website will give you a simple experience to your users regardless of whether they are able to access your OTT mobile application or not. Read this blog to learn how to create a video streaming app.

5. Choose the tech-stack

While there are various OTT platform development technologies and third-party tools that can be used to assemble your OTT applications – a final choice of which will rely upon your accurate necessities and OTT app ideas.

6. Get your OTT app developed

The final step is to execute your planning and get your application created. Thus, have a go at selecting a group of energetic OTT app developers and push ahead with a mission to win the OTT space.

abp live news app

How Much Does OTT Platform Development Cost?

The estimation of OTT video app development like Netflix or Hulu cost comes down to a number of factors:

  • The number of features that you are adding in the app
  • The number of platforms that the app would work on
  • The geographical location of your partnered mobile app development company is based on.

A rough ball-park estimate of the OTT app development cost will come down to a range between $150,000- $300,000.

  • OTT platform development in India would cost you between $25,000 and $60,000 for Netflix and Prime Video Like Apps and in the US around $35,000-$80,000.
  • The Cost to make an OTT platform like Hot Star would be around $35000 – $50,000
  • If your platform consists of hybrid features (Youtube + OTT) the costing would be approx $50,000-$70,000
  • A full fledged OTT platform development may also take 9-15 months to complete

This is the moment where we will mark the preparations, rendered. There is only one thing left to do – get in touch with our Over the Top (OTT) applications experts and get your app developed and live by experienced video streaming app services.

[Also Read: How much does it cost to build an Arabic content streaming platform like Shahid]

How Can Appinventiv Help You With OTT Platform Development?

At Appinventiv, the experts specialize in OTT platform development services where they design and develop robust custom video streaming platforms that give your business complete control over the user account, interface, and content.With a seamless and consistent operation strategy, our OTT application integration experts can effectively help you with your OTT-related initiatives.

Leverage our OTT video app development solutions to manage, distribute, and monetize your OTT content worldwide.Our OTT platform development services include: 

  • Interactive video solutions
  • Video content management 
  • Video surveillance solutions
  • Content delivery networks 
  • Digital rights management
  • OTT application consulting
  • Custom OTT app development
  • OTT UI and UX design
  • OTTapplication integration and much more. 

Step into the future of tailored OTT video software solutions with our next-gen OTT development. Talk to our experts to learn more about the OTT app development cost.

FAQs About OTT Development

Q. How OTT Video Apps Can Grow Your Video Business? 

A. OTT video apps, riding on the glaring popularity that Netflix has created, has a lot to offer to a video business. With its inclusion, you cannot just avail the perks of mass reach but also see an expedited rise in revenues at the back of the well-strategized business models.

Q. What is the Best VOD Revenue Model for your OTT business?

A. It depends entirely on your business idea but if you wish to take the Netflix route, you should choose the TVOD or SVOD monetization mode to get a steady inflow of revenue month after month.

Q. How to build OTT video apps?

A. First off, you will require the help of OTT app builders to handle the whole technical process. They will look into the feature set, designing, and development part of the whole application, leaving you to handle other parts of your business. Connect with our experts to learn about the OTT app development cost and the steps to build one.

Q. Is YouTube Being Threatened By OTT Services?

A. Not for some time to come. YouTube has the biggest market share, but in order to maintain its leadership tag, the app will have to find better ways to serve creators operating in the space of low subscribers and view counts. This can happen in the face of business support, high ad revenues, and creation of paywalls and subscriptions for some videos.

Sudeep Srivastava
Co-Founder and Director
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