VOD vs. OTT: What’s the Difference?

OTT and VOD both have many similarities, and people use them interchangeably. However, they are not the same; they transmit different kinds of data using different mediums.

OTT transmits data using the Internet and provides private live broadcasting to users. VOD, on the other hand, utilizes various mediums such as cables, satellites, and the Internet to transmit data. Rather than providing live broadcasting, VODs are more about pre-recorded videos.

Regardless of their differences, both mediums are growing significantly and becoming a choice of millions. This is why the VOD market size was US$ 48.9 billion in 2021, which has been predicted to reach US$ 156.9 billion by 2030.

The same happened with OTT, which has covered a market of $119 million in the United States and has been predicted to exceed $476 billion by 2027, according to Statista.

Let’s continue with the article and learn more about these two video transmission concepts.

What Is VOD?

What is VOD

VOD, an acronym for Video On Demand provides users with their favorite movies, web series, and TV shows whenever they want.

Previously, in the TV era, people had to wait for the broadcasting time of their TV shows and manage their schedules accordingly.

VOD has eliminated it and has liberated people to let them watch their shows and movies at their convenience. People can use their cable service to record the shows they want to watch, or they can use the Internet to sign up on a VOD platform and browse from there.

How Does VOD Work?

How Does VOD Work

VOD works by digitally recording the content and then storing this content on the server. When the viewer requests the video, the server fulfills this request using a high-speed internet connection.

All these videos, such as web series, TV shows, and movies, stay stored in one location, such as a video streaming platform. They can be accessed directly by paying for subscription plans or watching ads on these platforms.

Pros Of VOD

It brings many benefits compared to TV and traditional methods of watching videos. Let’s have a look at it.

➡️ Easy creation

VOD allows creators to create content with peace of mind since any schedules do not obstruct it. Content creators can create videos in any niche, upload them, and improve with time.

➡️ Accessibility

It also brings viewers a wide range of content and the comfort of streaming anywhere and anytime. Users using devices like smartphones, tablets, or computers can access the content using the platform application.

They can watch their choice of videos without leaving their place. They also access many playback options, making this experience more heavenly.

➡️ Convenience

With VOD in hand, users only need to download the application, and they can stream the content instantly. VOD eliminates the need to download any content in order to watch it.

VOD allows more than one user to access the same content simultaneously using one subscription plan. This means you can stream the video for yourself and the whole family.

➡️ Content Variety

Since VODs provide creators to create in many niches, there is no lack of content on these platforms. This leaves users with so many streaming options that they always have something to watch and enjoy.

Platforms like Netflix and Prime have massive libraries with continuous updates and unlimited entertainment.

➡️ Insights Of Your Audience

For creators, VOD platforms provide the most important element – the in-depth analytics. These analytics provide an idea about the audience, such as the devices they used, how they found the content, their country, and such data.

This data helps refine your marketing strategy and lets you target better.

Looking to start your own VOD streaming channel?

Cons of VOD

Just like there are advantages to using VOD, there are some downsides too.

➡️ More Competition

With time, more and more creators are becoming aware of VOD platforms and how beneficial they are for the growth of their content. The same has inspired many independent creators to join the race and create content.

This, in turn, has created high competition among creators, and they have to produce captivating creations to keep their audiences interested.

➡️ Limited Live Content

Since VODs are all about pre-recorded videos, finding these platforms with live broadcasting is hard. So if users are into live streams for their soccer game, other sports matches, or any other kind of live content, then VOD platforms do not offer many choices. 

➡️ Content Fatigue

Content fatigue is a common problem among viewers who feel confused about which show or video to stream next. Surely, some platforms provide previews and trailers, but it can still be frustrating at times with so many options available.

Types Of VOD Business Models

Types Of VOD Business Models

VOD generally comes in three variants: SVOD, TVOD, and AVOD. All these variants are different ways to consume content on streaming platforms. Creators may choose any of these variants for the monetization of their video. 

Before choosing one of these business models, a creator should always analyze their audience and the kind of content they upload to ensure selecting the right business model.

SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand): As a content creator, when you choose SVOD, you will earn when viewers pay the subscription fee and stream the whole content range for a specific period.

TVOD (Transactional Video on Demand): TVOD only charges the user for a piece of content that they want to watch. This model is similar to giving your content on rent for some time.

AVOD (Advertising Video on Demand): When you are unsure whether your audience will pay for your content, you opt for the AVOD business model. Creators earn money every time the viewers watch the ads that play during the videos.

What Is OTT?

What Is OTT

OTT, or over-the-top, is another technology to deliver content over the Internet. However, unlike VOD, OTT delivers live content instead of pre-recorded sessions or videos.

How Does OTT Work?

How Does OTT Work

Content creators or broadcasters use the OTT platform to provide video content. The video platform uses CDN or Content Delivery Network to transmit the content to remote servers.

When a user requests a particular video or broadcast, the video player gets the content from the CDN using the Internet and presents the user with their request.

Pros Of OTT

There are a variety of reasons why people opt for OTT platforms. Let’s discuss some of them here-

➡️ Pocket-Friendly Entertainment

Several OTT platforms provide live streams and pre-recorded videos, such as movies, web series, and TV shows. These streaming platforms offer a wide range of content to stream using monthly subscriptions.

By paying easy prices every month, users get to stream unlimited videos, which makes OTTs a must-try thing. 

➡️ Premium Quality

Whether about sound or video quality, OTT platforms deliver both of these top-notch. However, it also depends upon your Internet speed, but if your data provider works well, you get to experience premium streaming sessions every time.

➡️ Instant Playback

You can use OTTs anytime and anywhere; all you need is an internet connection to your smartphone or any other device. Thus, OTT lets you say goodbye to all those theater visits.

Cons of OTT

Just like VOD, OTT is also not an exception to having downsides. Let’s count some of them here-

➡️ The Need For Data

The biggest limitation of OTTs is the need for an internet connection. As long as you have the Internet, you can stream.

➡️ Poor Network Affects Streaming

Poor data connection makes everything unstable and might also become intolerable sometimes. The better the internet speed is, the better video quality you get. Usually, 2MBPS internet speed is necessary for a good streaming experience.

➡️ Possibility Of A Breach

Other than the most popular ones, others can have security issues. There is always a possibility of a breach of confidentiality, and users’ precious information might get leaked.

➡️ No Censorship

Since OTTs don’t go through any censorship, the content follows no age-appropriate rule. Anyone with the application and the Internet can stream any video.

What’s the Difference: VOD vs OTT

What’s the Difference VOD vs OTT
MeaningAny content that is transmitted using the Internet falls under OTT Content that is pre-recorded and can be played anytime using the Internet, cable, or satellite is VOD
PlaybackOTT broadcasts live events that can’t be played later in timeSince videos are pre-recorded and not live, one can play them anytime
Content VarietyOffers live streaming such as sports matches, concerts, SkypeOffers movies, web series, TV shows, documentaries, etc.
SecurityOTT platforms might raise security issuesVOD platforms provide high security for every device
Streaming OptionsWith OTT, users can only stream videosVOD platforms allow users to stream both audio and video
ExamplesAmazon Prime, Netflix, YouTube


More and more people are heading toward streaming as it has made entertainment bliss. As a creator, if you want to upload videos in your choice of niche, you can opt for VOD platforms and sign up.

Opt for an OTT platform if you are more inclined toward providing live content. Also, some platforms provide both VOD and OTT content; you can choose such platforms and start there as a creator.

You can utilize monetization options such as SVOD, TVDO, and AVOD to make money from your creations.

Create Own Video Channel


Is VOD a type of OTT?

VOD refers to providing access to pre-recorded content, whereas OTT also offers live broadcasting of content such as live streaming.

What Are The Business Benefits Of Launching A VOD Streaming?

Businesses can build and grow their online presence by providing their audience with content to stream. You can collect their audience data from a streaming platform, create their online community, monetize their content, and improve their marketing strategy.

How to start a Successful VOD Streaming channel?

With GUDSHO Video, you can sign up for a Creator Account and customize different elements accordingly. Upload your logo, description, and introduction video, and start hosting videos on your channel.

What is the best way to generate revenue from the VOD platform?

VOD platforms offer various revenue streams based on subscriptions, advertisements, rentals, etc. You can choose any of these or more than one of these revenue options to generate income.

Which is more profitable? VOD or OTT?

If you are primarily interested in providing pre-recorded content such as movies, web series, and videos, you should consider VOD. However, you should consider OTT if you can offer your viewers real-time content or live streams.


  1. Wrenley Reply

    It’s an insightful article with the current trends of VOD & OTT and helps for many creators to choose the right streaming service. Thanks

  2. Scottie Reply

    First of all thanks for the informative blog. I’m an independent short film creator. Which one is best for me to increase my video business revenue, VOD platform or OTT Streaming platform. Please help me to make my video journey successful.

  3. Adalee Reply

    Obviously the Video on Demand is more popular and profitable, example YouTube. Thanks for the great comparison between VOD & OTT. Now I have a clear idea to choose streaming platform to run my Video business.

  4. Farzana Reply

    This blog is an insightful knowledge base for understanding the debate between VOD and OTT. The way it breaks down the technical aspects and the user experience is enlightening.

  5. Amal Dev Reply

    It’s a fascinating to see how OTT and VOD are shaping the future of content consumption, and it’s clear that they have their own unique advantages. Thanks for sharing the best comparison aspects between OTT vs VOD.

  6. Karnival Reply

    The distinctions about VOD vs OTT can sometimes be a bit blurry, but this blog `does an excellent job of clarifying them. It’s amazing how technology continues to expand our options in the world of digital entertainment.

  7. John Sauraj Reply

    VOD and OTT are two terms I’ve often heard but didn’t completely understand. This blog clarifies their differences brilliantly. Special thanks to the writer.

  8. Wick Rach Reply

    I have plan to launch my very own VOD platform. Where can I begin. Can any one help to build Video on demand platform?

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