There has been a major shift in the way people watch television and view video content. With the increasing internet penetration and awareness, not everyone now needs to have cable subscription or DVD players to watch their favorite movies.
Movie lovers in Nigeria are always searching for convenient sources to get latest blockbusters from Hollywood, Bollywood, Nollywood and other movie industries. The huge entertainment market in Nigeria has given rise to innovative platforms becoming available to capture the interest of increasing number of audiences. One of such innovative platforms that emerged to satisfy audience members in Nigeria is and gradually growing in acceptance is Video On Demand (VOD) services.
The VOD services are online streaming platforms that provide alternative entertainment and other contents to subscribers. These are also described as Over The Top (OTT) streaming services because they bypass cable, terrestrial, and satellite TV channels to reach the audiences. The concept – OTT – is derived from the fact that these streaming services due not pass through the traditional broadcast platforms (cable, and satellite TV) to get to the audience.
Furthermore, VOD services are video streaming outlets for all visuals, including music, videos, news, sports and live TV. These are very convenient alternatives for people to access the entertainment world and enjoy their favorite programmes and shows. The users pay a fee to gain access to providers’ library containing thousands of movies, popular TV shows, sports, children’s programmes, among vast variety of entertainment content. Users visit the provider’s channels (websites) or download their App to gain access to the contents. There are also free video streaming services but the ones that are paid for have more exciting and up-to-date contents in the popular movie industries across the world.
Movies downloaded from some service providers are valid for 48 hours from the first playback. Some other service providers allow the movies to run for 14 days, especially Nollywood movies. Some of the providers do not have download limit while others have a limit to the number of movies you can download. Platforms like Netflix can cost as much as N2,900 to N4,400 access subscription while some others like Solo View can go for as low as N200 to N350, depending on the movies. Users can rent movies from these platforms, pay monthly subscription to have access to the movies or pay per movie download.
The VOD platforms are flexible and personalized sources of entertainment and other contents. In Nigeria for instance where there is epileptic power supply, VOD users can download movies on their android phones and watch latest blockbusters even without worrying about putting own generating sets. Just get a power bank to support your phone and you’ll have unlimited fun. The VOD services have become alternative to television as a source of entertainment to many users.
In the USA for instance, some of the most popular VOD service providers among film viewers are Direct TV Now, Netflix, HBO Now, Crackle, tubi tv, Hulu, View Star, and YouTube TV. These platforms have become very popular among film audiences in the Western world. A few of them also have presence in the movie markets in Africa.
Data cost and Nigeria’s struggling internet penetration contributes to the low adoption of VOD in the country. Despite these challenges, VOD services have grown in presence in Nigeria’s entertainment industry, especially among Nollywood fans and other movie lovers.
There are several VOD services Nigerian film audiences patronize to gain access to Hollywood, Bollywood and Nollywood movies. Some of these channels are owned by foreign firms but they also stream Nollywood movies, which makes them popular among Nigerians. A number of these services are owned by Nigerians. Here is a list of top VOD services owned by Nigerian;
This platform is for streaming Hausa language movie and diverse programmes. It was launched in 2019 by Arewa24, a northern Nigerian language channel. It is a global subscription VOD and OTT streaming service which aims to bring Hausa language speaking audiences in the North, other parts of Nigeria and in the Diaspora, together on a television platform. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Arewa24, Jacob Arback, describes the platform as “Netflix for Hausa content”, meaning that it offers all genres content, including drama, music, sports, etc. Users will get unlimited access for $ 4.99 per month and $ 48 per year. This service is available on the Arewa24 website and iOS and Android apps. It provides no-ad experience to users. Arewa24 is very popular among Hausa language movie lovers in Nigeria.
9. Nolly Express TV
This is a fast rising VOD service provider in popular in Nigeria for streaming very interesting Nollywood movies. It was founded in 2018 by Nollymovies Entertainment Ltd. It streams both free and paid-for contents to a huge audience base across the world.
8. Wazobia Nolly
This is another rapidly growing VOD service provider in Nigeria’s entertainment market. Wazobia Nolly TV provides diverse genre of Nigerian Nollywood and Ghanaian Ghallywood Movies on Youtube for audiences to enjoy.
Afrinolly is a popular mobile application which first came into limelight in September 2011, after it was announced winner in the Entertainment category of the first Google Android Developers Challenge, Sub-Saharan Africa held in Nairobi, Kenya. The application enables users to watch African movies, movie trailers, short films and music videos that have been made public by content owners or their legal representative, particularly from the Nollywood film industry. The CEO of Afrinolly, Chike Maduegbuna, after excelling at the Google Android Developers Competition, took the platform to another level as one of the leading streaming service providers in Africa. In May 2012, Afrinolly signed a partnership deal with leading African telecommunications provider MTN Nigeria to help drive app consciousness among Nigerians and promote the Nollywood industry on mobile devices. The co-branding deal yielded results which heralded the formation of MTN/Afrinolly partnership. Subscribers of MTN across Nigeria began to enjoy the Afrinolly exciting content. Today, Afrinolly is among the most sought-after platforms for African movies.
NollyLand is a popular VOD for Nollywood movie lovers in Nigeria. It was launched in 2014 by Nollyland Direct Ltd, a start-up based in the US and Nigeria. The founder and CEO of the company, Dr. Ngozi Uti, has a vision to make this VOD the biggest Nollywood movie streaming service in Nigeria and Africa. It streams Nigerian and African movies to mobile phones, tablets, TVs, media players, and computers. There are thousands of Nigerian & African movies people can download or stream from this platform. Nollyland offers a subscription model and also in-app credits for users to watch movies. Some features of the app include adaptive video streaming, automatic bookmarking of movies, watch list and more. It also has relatively affordable monthly subscription of $6 for access to enjoy thousands of diverse content.
This is another popular VOD brand in Nigeria. It was established in 2012 by NULTAN, an innovative technology company with products across video, enterprise, online shopping, web, mobile and gaming categories. TVNolly showcases some of the best of Nigerian and African movies to millions of viewers around the world. This platform offers free and paid On-demand movie streaming services to their audience across over 150 countries across the world. It has huge presence among viewers in the USA, UK, Nigeria and Ghana. This is one of the biggest VOD brands among Nigerian film lovers.
4. Nollywood Pictures
When compiling the list of biggest VOD services in Africa with the most amazing Nollywood film contents, Nollywood Pictures TV will definitely be at the top of the food chain. It was founded in 2012 by Nollymovies Entertainment Ltd. The company is a consortium of Nigerian filmmakers, who have the primary goal of developing advanced and mainstream avenue for bringing Nollywood entertainment to the digital audience. Millions of subscribers across the world enjoy latest Nollywood movies of diverse genre on this platform.
3. Realnolly TV
Realnolly TV is a household name in Nigeria’s entertainment industry. Lovers of Nollywood movies outside Nigeria subscribe to Realnolly tv for interesting contents. This VOD service was established in 2012 by Realnollymovies international Agencies Limited. It is a fast growing online video streaming and distribution company. It has one of the largest collections of Nollywood/Africa Movies on the web. Realnolly TV is a huge brand in the internet movie distribution market. With over 300 million views and over 15 million subscribers across the world, Realnolly tv can only be described as a phenomenal VOD brand in Africa.
2. iBAKA tv
iBAKA tv is another giant in the internet movie streaming business in Africa. It is one of the pillars of the VOD market in Nollywood and Nigeria’s entertainment industry. This platform was established in 2011 by Blessed Ilukor Idornigie and has its headquarters in Lagos. It is among the market leaders in the VOD business for Nollywood movies, with millions of fans patronizing the platform. Ibaka TV is one of the most sought-after choice destinations in African Internet entertainment. It is a distribution platform for Nollywood movies, with a wide range of exciting choices for subscribers to enjoy. Ibaka TV provides services for as little as $7/month, making is one of the relatively affordable platforms for Nollywood movies.
This is the leading VOD channel in Nigeria for Nollywood movies. It is an indigenous streaming service that was launched in 2011 by Jason Njoku. It is very popular among Nollywood movie fans in Nigeria. This platform provides paid-for Nigerian films on-demand. It is one of the first movie streaming platforms in Africa. There are popular Nollywood movies available on Iroko TV and they include My wife & I, 93 days, Banana island ghost and many more. Subscription for Using IrokoTV starts at N3,000 to N5000 every 12 months.