OTT vs Theater – Which is better? Which one is the future of Movies?

OTT vs Theater: During Covid our way of enjoying movies changed. There was a time when we can only enjoy new movie releases in theaters only, we use to book tickets then travel to theaters and enjoy movies with family and friends. Movie theaters were used to be most loved weekend spot for most of us but now the things have changed, and we started enjoying movies in OTT platforms which more people think more convenient way of enjoying movie considering the pandemic situation. We will peek into the insight of OTT vs THEATER and will try to conclude which is better for future.

OTT vs Theater – Which is better Which one is the future of Movies

Before jumping into the comparison, we will first check what is OTT.

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What is OTT(Over-the-top)?

OTT or Over-the-top is the modern method of streaming the media content and delivering the content directly to the consumers over the web. It represents the future of entertainment. The " Over-the-top " media service is any online content provider that provides streaming media as a standalone product. The term is commonly used in social media where video is needed, but it also refers to audio streaming, messaging services, or online voice calling solutions.

OTT is a simple little word that describes a new way of delivering film and TV content online without the need for regular streaming, cable or satellite payments. - TV providers.

Basically, OTT uses an Internet connection to play TV shows and movies. Lot of OTT providers have their own app or websites or page of some sort where a user can access the content available by subscribing. Some of the most popular OTT providers include Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar, Sony LIV etc.


Which one is the future of Movies? OTT vs Theater

Both OTTs and Movie theaters have their own USPs in the streaming business. Theater and OTT have their own fan base. Both platforms have gone through transformation for years, theaters have gone from single screens to multi-screen and normal screen to PVR, IMAX etc. Similarly, OTT is growing over the years, OTT Platforms have seen an exponential rise in the number of viewers in their already huge customer base. The pandemic has forced the people to stay inside their homes and which in turn has made them turn towards OTT Platforms more.

Mass Audience – Theaters can reach only limited audience at a time due to space and seating constraints, but OTT have an upper hand on this point. All subscribers can watch the movie or series at the same time. Millions of users can stream at the same time the movie is released. So now movies released online is reaching larger audience. During Covid, families hesitate to go to theaters with their parents and children due to the fear of getting infected and they prefer OTT over theaters for watching movies or shows. In short now OTT platforms have succeeded in reaching mass audience at the same time which is difficult for theaters to achieve.

Convenience – Here everyone may have their own perspective, but we think that OTT is more convenient that theaters. Watching a new movie in OTT is just a click away while in theaters we need to reserve the ticket in advance then go or drive to theaters wait in ques to enter the theater and so many other related process and expense. But in OTT you can watch a movie at any time anywhere, you don’t have to travel or book slots to watch a movie. More over we can pause and watch a movie at our convenience even watch as many as times we wish which is not in the case of theater releases. Also the bad or nonsense audience in theaters can ruin your movie experience which is not the case in OTT.  So, we think OTT is more convenient than theaters in this busy world.

Heaven for newbies – Newbies or low budget film always had a difficult time to get a theater to sustain in theaters, they always had to face very competition for big films or films from super starts. But with the introduction of OTT this issue is solved up to a limit. We have witnessed lots of good newbie movies in OTT during Covid.

Theater vs OTT - Economic

Economic – Standing on user’s or consumer’s feet we think OTT is economical that theaters because in most of the OTT platforms you can get a year subscription for just 2-3 movie tickets you spend in theaters. Same amount you spend in theaters for 3-4 movies you can watch 1000s of movies in OTT and that too for a complete year. So, in all angle OTT is highly cost effective.

Series or shows – If you are a series lover then OTT is the go-to place for you. We have not witnessed the release of series in theaters usually so for series OTT is the best or only place for you.

Movie experience – The real fun of watching a movie comes when you are in a good theater. Theaters are developing in all aspects; modern technologies can provide us the real movie experience. In OTT the visual and sound effect can never match a theater experience. Also, theaters used to be a go to weekend place for most of us or friends outing spot. 3D or 7D or any other multi dimension movies then the best option is theater, this experience can never be experienced with OTT unless you have those big setup in your home. The movie experience or the feel which we get from OTT can never match that with theaters. In short incase of real movie experience theaters are always our preference.

Theater vs OTT - Movie Experience

Big budget movies – We have always saw in news that big or high budget films always prefer theater release rathe than OTT.  That can have two potential reasons, first one will be the profit margin because a big budget film will expect a large profit margin which may be difficult to get from OTT and the second reason will the movie experience we discussed. Because of these big budget film will have great visuals and sound which should be experienced in theaters only, so get that fun they prefer theater releases.

We accept that OTT is better in many aspects in this time but theaters are used to be bread and butter for many, there were thousands of employees who are directly employed and lakhs of employees who are indirectly affected by theater closure or shutting down the shows. Theaters actually plays a vital role in money rolling, the transportation amount you spend, ticket booking amount even the popcorn you buy were very crucial part of money rolling and which use to be earning for many houses. We think that we want both to continue together in their own way of entertainment.

Above are some of the few points we considered to measure the difference. You can select your point of consideration if you are person who is looking for convenience or economy then OTT is for you but if you are a person who think movie experience matters a lot then theaters are for you.

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