The Top 10 Online Video Platforms of 2023

December 06, 2023 - by
Top 10 OVPs of 2023

Opportunities abound in online video today. But with dozens of platforms on the market, it can be daunting to navigate this space. Whether you’re a publisher, broadcaster, educator, or independent creator, this blog post rounds up the top partners you should consider for each use case, so you can accelerate your video journey.

Why videos are so important to the web

More companies than ever are using online video – as part of their jobs, to communicate both live and async, to engage and grow their audiences and customer bases. In fact, video is increasingly the preferred way that people engage with content online: 

  • A generational shift: 2023 marks the first year that online video surpasses TV in daily time spent among US adults
  • Mobile first: 70% of online video viewers watch on their smartphones, and mobile ad spending has already overtaken desktop, on track to reach $106B by 2027 
  • Video everywhere: Digital video ad spend is growing 2x as fast as digital media overall.

What is an online video platform?

An online video platform (OVP) is a technology solution or software that provides a range of content management capabilities. While early OVPs focused on video hosting and delivery, modern online video platforms today offer a growing suite of features. They can help you create and edit video, manage content libraries, automate tagging and syndication, unlock new monetization streams, and much more.

The benefit of using an OVP is having the ability to consolidate video management in one place. For the vast majority of companies, this is more cost-effective than building the infrastructure yourself, or piecing it together with a patchwork of point solutions. The global OVP market is forecasted to reach $1.6 billion by 2027 and accounts for over 80% of global web traffic.

YouTube – the biggest player but not always the right fit

YouTube is probably the first platform that comes to mind when you think about online video. Its scale is unparalleled, reaching over 2.6 billion users worldwide. It’s free, user-friendly, and has high built-in virality. But that doesn’t mean YouTube is the best solution for your business needs.

OVPs are not a one-size-fits-all market. Publishers and broadcasters may prioritize content discovery and distribution, whereas a college or enterprise might need robust collaboration tools. Plus, while YouTube is free to start, its feature gaps may require you to buy additional tools, eventually proving more expensive than other low-cost options on the market.




Best for Publishers

EX.CO

EX.CO

Monetization is the biggest challenge in media today, but it’s still an afterthought for even the biggest online video platforms. Publishers need an OVP that’s purpose-built for revenue growth and EX.CO offers the most robust functionality on the market. As an all-in-one platform, it also helps publishers consolidate all of their video solutions as part of supply path optimization efforts.

Notable features

  • Publisher-first platform focused on video monetization and positive UX
  • Built-in AI yield engine that has been proven to drive 2x or more revenue over legacy OVPs

Strengths

  • Fully customizable video player UI and playlist curation
  • Easy to integrate - automation replaces manual upload workflows
  • AI-driven playlists and contextual video recommendations
  • Additional premium content to help achieve 100% video coverage
  • Real-time pricing & identity for cookieless revenue
  • Detailed video performance and revenue analytics
  • Seamless integration with publishers’ CMS
  • No fees or upfront cost

Considerations

  • Broadcasting limited to "bring your own stream"
  • Limited support for user-generated video or screenshare



Best for Live Streaming and Broadcasters

If you’re looking to broadcast live events, the stakes in online video are even higher. Within a few hours, an OVP can make or break your quarter (or year). You need a partner that can guarantee uptime, as well as flexibility across devices and contexts. Dacast and JW Player are the more established incumbents here, while Vimeo offers a more customizable player backed by a robust fan community.

DaCast

Dacast

Notable features

  • Customers include media companies, TV stations, religious networks, sports leagues, government, and municipal organizations
  • Uses high-performing Akamai CDN to reach worldwide audiences
  • Cloud-based live streaming solutions and OTT video streaming across all devices, including mobile

Strengths

  • Unlimited viewers and live channels
  • Supports real-time, ad-free, and mobile streaming
  • Advanced dynamic token securityReal-time video streaming analytics
  • Integrates with subscriptions (SVOD, AVOD, TVOD), paywalls, and global currencies
  • Integrates with Zoom so teams can livestream meetings
  • 24/7 customer support

Considerations

  • Lacks any native ad monetization capabilities
  • Longer learning curve given robust streaming features
  • No personalization or content syndication marketplaces
  • No free plans

JW_Player_logo

JW Player

Notable features

  • Streaming pioneer; its original open-source code evolved to become YouTube
  • Offers a lot of player customization options and has an intuitive user interface for uploading and content management
  • Fast both in rendering the uploaded videos and in time to load on page

Strengths

  • Support for ad monetization, including CSAI, VPAID 2.0, Google IMA, etc.
  • Algorithmic recommendations based on metadata and performance data
  • Studio-approved DRM, geo-blocking, and URL token signing
  • Comprehensive APIs for both content management and data
  • Advanced analytics for live streams
  • Provides share functionality built into the player itself
  • Strong support for Android and iOS via native SDKs

Considerations

  • No built-in yield engine or ad server technology 
  • No support for paid subscriptions or pay per view (PPV)
  • Recommendations are not personalized or AI-powered
  • Limited content management and security features
  • Not easy to add clickable links or other call-to-actions in the player
  • Analytics are clunky and not very user-friendly
  • Email support is only for $100+/month plans
  • Gets very expensive for large numbers of devices or volume of content

vimeo

Vimeo

Notable features

  • Popular creator platform that initially appeals to freelancers, brands, and agencies
  • Acquired Livestream in 2017 in pivot from consumer to B2B distribution
  • AI script generator and text-based video editor
  • No video production or editing experience needed

Strengths

  • Highly engaged community of 200M+ creators, channels, and end users
  • Customizable look and feel for players (including embeds)
  • Ability to publish videos directly to social media, embed to your site, or create custom GIFs for email
  • Vimeo Create offers template-based video builder with graphics, music, text
  • Multiple privacy and security options, password protection, and private links
  • Interactive features include polls, Q&As, audience chat, and branded libraries
  • No ads, unlimited viewers, and full-HD streaming
  • Screen recordings, creation, and streaming all available alongside webinars or virtual events
  • Custom end screens and contact forms for email capture
  • Chapter creation, customization with your company’s brand kit, and SEO optimization 

Considerations

  • Limited monetization options beyond paid VOD
  • Tiered pricing plans include limits on larger file sizes
  • Live streaming and advanced privacy only available for premium users
  • Still relies on manual video tagging to drive discoverability



Best for Content Creators

If you’re an individual or small team of content creators, it’s hard to overlook YouTube. With billions of global users, each spending on average half an hour a day on the platform, it remains the best way to reach large and diverse audiences. However, it also comes at the cost of limited privacy controls and content ownership.

youtube_logo-removebg-preview

YouTube

Notable features

  • Unique exposure to large and diverse global audiences
  • Consumer-driven content model ensures high UX standards

Strengths

  • Built-in platform audience drives viral reach
  • Native integrations with Google’s ad platforms
  • User-friendly and easy to navigate
  • Free for everyone (aside for some premium features)
  • Supports both Live and Video on Demand
  • CTA functionality – subscribe, discover, comment
  • AI-generated transcriptions and captions

Considerations

  • Content appears beside off-brand, third-party ads and logos
  • Pre- and mid-roll ad slots may impact user experience
  • Lacks key enterprise features (e.g., security, integrations, analytics)
  • Primarily self-service, limited customer support
  • TOS grants YouTube royalty-free license to redistribute
  • Limited embedding features (won’t ever look native)



Best for Enterprise

When it comes to video for companies and large organizations, reliability and security are top priorities. There’s also a greater need for integrations with tools throughout your tech stack. With decades of experience in the space, Brightcove has become a premium partner for big-name brands, while Vidyard has focused on corporate communications and sales productivity.

Brightcove logo

Brightcove

Notable features

  • Trusted by leading sports, media, and global brands (Johnson & Johnson, AMC, Ford)
  • Emmy Award-winning support for live streaming primetime events

Strengths

  • Integrates with CRM and social media tools (e.g. Marketo, Hootsuite)
  • Supports live streaming, OTT, and VOD hosting
  • Good monetization support for DSAI, AVOD, SVOD, and VOD
  • Includes basic video editor and categorization tools
  • Fast video upload time

Considerations

  • Monetization tools only available for premium customers
  • Security controls lack nuance – settings are all or nothing
  • Limited automation and no built-in recording functionality
  • Pricing is too expensive for smaller teams just getting started with video

Vidyard LOGO

Vidyard

Notable features

  • Popular among marketing, sales, and corporate communications teams
  • Recently expanded into user-friendly video and screen capture 

Strengths

  • Ad-free video hosting and marketing features
  • Integrates with sales tools (e.g. Outreach, Salesforce, Marketo)
  • Customizable, branded video landing pages and playlists
  • Advanced security, permissions, and password protection
  • Automated SEO and transcriptions
  • Large user community

Considerations

  • Not an all-in-one solution – lacks live streaming and monetization
  • Video editing tool is still primitive and complicated
  • Video embed and length limits vary by plan
  • High price point for many enterprises

Honorable Mentions:


vimeo

JW_Player_logo



Best for Education

If you’re managing video in a college or school environment, you’ll need yet another set of criteria. Ease of use is key to driving adoption among students and teachers. You’ll also need robust collaboration features to support a seamless virtual classroom experience. Kaltura has been defining this category for nearly two decades, but its build-your-own approach is being challenged by user-friendly upstarts like Loom that are thriving in the world of remote work.

KLTR_BIG-2292dfd7

Kaltura

Notable features

  • Nearly two decades of experience working with educational institutions
  • Open-source nature of the software allows teams to pick and choose features a la carte while configuring their platform instance

Strengths

  • Highly customizable platform with video APIs, SDKs, and developer tools
  • Robust user community where teams share add-ons and integrations
  • Specialized education tools including virtual classrooms, LMS video, lecture capture, digital whiteboards, shared notes, and campus portal
  • Monetization support includes SVOD, AVOD, TVOD, and PPV streaming

Considerations

  • Platform’s extensibility comes with a steeper learning curve 
  • Ongoing maintenance can be costly as new uses cases pop up
  • Limited back-end analytics and audio support features
  • Lack of low-cost options for smaller or resource-constrained organizations
  • Mixed reviews about responsivity of tech support

Loom-logo-new-2020

Loom

Notable features

  • Rapidly growing browser-based video capture and screen recording tool
  • Helps remote teams communicate async and improve productivity

Strengths

  • Highly intuitive UX for beginners to self-record videos
  • Social features let viewers respond with emojis and comments
  • Users can easily click and draw on-screen while recording
  • Supports 4K resolution and recording across desktop and mobile
  • Delivers basic video engagement insights

Considerations

  • Limited built-in editing and hosting capabilities
  • Recording is internet-based and dependent on connection
  • Free plan only supports videos up to five minutes long



Best Open Source


video JS logo

Video JS

Notable features

  • Built specifically for an HTML5 world
  • User-friendly and cost-effective

Strengths

  • Sponsored by several companies including its main sponsor: Brightcove
  • Rapidly growing customer base, currently used on over 450K websites
  • Easy to set up with simple video player framework
  • Plays MP4 and WebM file formats but also supports adaptive streaming
    formats like HLS and DASH
  • Specific UI for live streams
  • Customizable player that can be easily styled with extra CSS
  • Hundreds of community-built plugins, including Chromecast, IMA, and VR
  • Supported everywhere on desktop and mobile and includes cross-browser “skins”

Considerations

  • Might be arduous to implement if not familiar with HTML5 and coding
  • Will take more work to maintain and optimize manually
  • Limited monetization capabilities



Wondering how to choose an OVP for your specific needs? Check out our OVP Guide for Publishers.

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