Future uncertain for OTT, streaming in Spain

DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 12 January 2015

While Spanish pay-TV operators are seeing the market grow slightly, there is less optimistic news regarding new video platforms and technologies like streaming, over-the-top (OTT) and video-on-demand (VOD).

Magine TV is the latest project to close down in the country, while Totalchannel failed as an independent company in 2014 and Netflix continues to postpone a Spanish launch.

As many times as Netflix has been cited as the next OTT operator to land in Spain, it has denied the rumours. The company's main concern is that the Spanish audience is not willing to pay for content, although the recent approval of a strict copyright law has driven pirate and unregulated streaming sites to closure, reducing piracy rates.

Totalchannel hasn't completely disappeared, but the streaming TV platform has been absorbed by Mediapro, which bought it in May 2014 and added it to its service portfolio. The OTT service stopped operating regularly after a year of struggling to find a solid position in the Spanish market and being unable to make a profit.

Magine TV is the most recent company to throw in the towel. A year and half in beta - with no charge for its portfolio of pay-TV channels delivered via streaming - was not enough for the Swedish platform to settle in the Spanish market, thus driving it to leave the country as of 1 February.

However, despite bad news for some, platforms such as Wuaki.tv and Canal+'s Yomvi are finding stability in the market and other services such as Filmin and Atresmedia's VOD service Nubeox are also experiencing growth.