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Transactional Video on Demand (TVOD)

What is Transactional Video on Demand (TVOD)?

Transactional Video on Demand (TVOD) is an over the top (OTT) media distribution model where consumers can pay a one-time fee to either rent or buy a piece of digital content.

TVOD transactions may be divided into two categories:

  1. Electronic Sell-Through (EST): consumers pay a one-time fee for permanent access to a content asset, and
  2. Download to Rent (DTR): consumers pay a (lower) one-time fee for the ability to stream a content asset for a limited time, usually 48 hours.


Why is TVOD an Important Distribution Model?

TVOD represents a sizable segment of the global OTT marketplace, with projected annual revenues of more than $10 billion for 2022.

The TVOD model has enabled content owners to cost-effectively expand their distribution, access new segments of the OTT market, and monetize their digital content, including both new releases and legacy assets with latent commercial potential.

TVOD services charge consumers between $3.99 and $6.99 for DTR and up to $29.99 for EST transactions, figures comparable to the monthly subscription fees charged by many Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD) streaming services. When consumers are willing to pay a premium for highly-anticipated or exclusive content, TVOD delivers higher revenue per viewer.


How Does TVOD Work?

TVOD Content Goes Over the Top

TVOD streaming services, just like other OTT streaming services, deliver video content to consumers over the Internet. Consumers can access TVOD streaming services on a variety of connected devices, including desktop computers, tablets, mobile phones, and connected TV devices.


TVOD Content is Pay Per View

While SVOD streaming services charge a monthly fee for unlimited access to a large library of content, TVOD streaming services charge for content on a transactional, pay-per-view basis.

Consumers view content on TVOD apps or services by paying a one-time fee to either rent or buy it.

Content owners can choose to offer only the rental option, only the purchase option, or both options to their TVOD audiences. They can also set the price point for both renting and purchasing the content. Some content owners offer multiple quality levels of the same content asset (e.g. Standard Definition, HD, Ultra HD, etc.) to consumers at different price points.

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TVOD Content Can Appear on Multiple Services

A great benefit of TVOD is the ability to simultaneously leverage the reach of multiple TVOD services in your distribution strategy.

Some of the most popular TVOD streaming providers include Amazon Video, YouTube Movies & Shows, Google Play, Apple iTunes, Redbox, and Vudu. Content owners can reach a massive audience and maximize their revenue potential by monetizing content assets simultaneously across many or all of these services.

Plus, TVOD services like Google Play, YouTube Movies, and iTunes connect to mobile payment services (Google Pay and Apple Pay) that make it quick and easy for consumers to purchase content.


TVOD Services Deliver International Content Distribution

Content owners are leveraging TVOD streaming services to plug gaps in their distribution and monetization strategies, especially by making premium content available to International audiences on a transactional basis.

One example of this is The Batman (2022). Produced and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, The Batman was released in theaters on March 1st, 2022, then on HBO Max on April 18th, 2022.

But HBO Max only serves the USA, so there was a clear opportunity to monetize The Batman on other OTT streaming services with more International reach. Warner Bros. acted on this opportunity by releasing The Batman on International TVOD services like Amazon Video, Apple TV, Google Play Movies, and YouTube Movies.


3 TVOD Examples You Should Know

Amazon Prime Video

Amazon Prime Video is an SVOD/TVOD streaming service. In addition to the huge library of content available on-demand to its 175 million SVOD subscribers, Amazon Prime Video also functions as a modern “digital video store”, offering thousands of content assets for purchase or rental in the TVOD distribution model.

While Amazon’s subscription-based streaming services are available worldwide, TVOD transactions are available only in specific countries: United States, the UK, Germany, Japan, France, Italy, Spain, Australia, Mexico, Netherlands, Brazil, India, and Canada.

Amazon Prime Video’s International reach makes it an excellent TVOD distribution partner for content owners. Available titles include both new releases and classic films and movies with widespread distribution across TVOD streaming services.


Google Play Movies & TV

Google Play Movies & TV is part of the Play Store, Google’s online store that distributes games, apps, and media entertainment to Android users.

Consumers access the Google Play Store from their web browser or Android device, choosing from thousands of movie titles to buy or rent. Google Play offers a versatile mix of new and old titles from a variety of production companies, including Disney, 20th Century Studios, HBO movies, Lionsgate, and MGM. There’s also a recommendation engine that recommends movies to users based on their viewing history.

Monetizing content assets through the Google Play Store gives content owners access to a market that includes billions of Android device users.



Vudu is a digital video store and streaming service run by Fandango Media, a joint-venture between Warner Bros. Discovery Inc. and NBCUniversal.

While other hybrid distribution services like Amazon Prime Video monetize content with a mixture of subscriber (SVOD) and transaction revenue (TVOD), Vudu combines its rent/buy TVOD offerings with a sizable library of TV and Movies that are “Free with Ads”, a distribution model known as Advertising Video on Demand (AVOD).

This hybridized AVOD/TVOD distribution model allows Vudu to attract new users to its platform with free content before marketing paid TVOD content to those same consumers. Vudu now offers a selection of more than 20,000 movie titles and 8,000 TV shows on its growing platform.


Manage Your TVOD Revenue with Revedia Digital

TVOD distribution is enabling content owners to access a wider audience, increase revenue per viewer, and maximize the long-term revenue potential of valuable content assets.

SymphonyAI Media helps content owners successfully monetize assets in TVOD distribution, using sophisticated software to track distributor and content performance, execute complex royalty calculations, manage content licensing agreements at scale, and accurately forecast revenue.

The Revedia Digital platform gives content owners access to data-driven analytics, revealing actionable insights that help you optimize your distribution strategy, enhance and measure content performance across channels, and maximize video revenue generation.

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