What is Pay-Per-View And How Does it Work?

When you add PPV to a package, you’ll be able to watch shows on a Pay-Per-View basis, which means you’ll have to pay for each show you watch on that particular PPV channel.

Pay-Per-View (PPV) is a system in which a viewer must pay a fee to watch special programs such as LIVE Events or Sports. The program is broadcast LIVE to all PPV subscribers at the same time.

WWE (World Wrestling Federation) and UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) are two examples of Pay-Per-View (PPV) events.

What’s distinct about the PPV feature is that you don’t have to pay to have it “on” for your account, and you only have to pay when you want to watch a specific show.

How Pay-Per-View Started

You’ve probably heard of “Pay-Per-View” (PPV), but did you realize it’s a centuries-old business model? The first televised and monetized boxing match was between Joe Louis and Jersey Joe in 1948.

Pay-Per-View cable channels became more mainstream decades later, in 1985. Then, as the internet grew, Pay-Per-View services became more widely available, making them accessible to online content creators.

The model hasn’t changed, even though the medium has. Pay-Per-View streaming, also known as transactional video on demand (TVOD), is a monetization technique that allows platforms and content creators to charge viewers for access to their content.

Unlike a subscription service, which allows you to pay for unlimited access to content for a set time, Pay-Per-View streaming requires you to pay for individual pieces of content, which is often for a limited time or a single viewing.

Pay-Per-View is a single payment billing model, whereas subscriptions bill you automatically on a recurring subscription cycle.

How Pay-Per-View Streaming Works

Pay-Per-View streaming is prevalent in the entertainment and sports industries, where you can buy a ticket to watch a concert or a major sporting event live on the internet. The disadvantage is that you may not catch up on the event or download the LIVE stream to watch it later; this is where things start to get interesting.

If you’ve paid good money for a LIVE stream, shouldn’t you be able to download or access it so you can watch it later? But this isn’t always the case.

When you Pay-Per-View, you buy a ticket to watch your paid video content, whether it’s live or pre-recorded, and you can’t watch it again in most cases.

Regrettably, you’re only paying for the content, not the overall experience. The experience and atmosphere are a big part of why we go to paid events. Given that watching a LIVE stream of an event does not provide the full experience, you shouldn’t have to pay as much for access to that content—especially if you won’t have unlimited access.

Take Disney+ Premier Access, for example, which for a one-time fee of $30, gives Disney+ subscribers early streaming access to a movie while it’s still playing in theaters. It essentially allows you to purchase a virtual ticket to a brand-new Disney film to watch at home rather than in a theater while it is still in theaters.

Once you’ve paid the fee for access to your preferred movie, you can watch or download it as many times as you want as long as you’re a Disney+ subscriber.

Premier Access movies eventually become available to all Disney+ subscribers for no additional fee. Hence, the benefit of Premier Access is exclusive and grants early access to new movies as soon as they are released.

Perhaps the Disney+ approach, rather than traditional Pay-Per-View streaming, is the way to go? While others wait for the free general release, you get unlimited and early access.

Selecting a PPV Show

So now that you know that PPV is a Pay-Per-View feature, you’re probably wondering how you use it.

PPV shows usually feature sporting events (boxing, mixed martial arts, and so on) or other live-event shows that viewers want to see in real-time. Because these shows broadcast LIVE, they follow a predetermined schedule independent of the video package provider (aka MTC TV). The PPV channel programming is available on channel 601 for MTC TV video. When you want to watch a specific show, go to the PPV channel’s TV guide, find out when it airs, and then buy it.

When the show begins, change the channel to that channel, and you’ll have access to the show for the duration of the program. Your access to the content expires when the show ends.

Pay-Per-View Limitations

Many people are curious if there is a limit to the number of PPV events they can order. Yes, that is correct. Every account has a set amount of money that can be spent. If you’ve been a Spectrum customer for more than six months and have a good standing, you can request an increase in your limit using your position. You can do so by contacting Spectrum’s customer service department and speaking with a representative.

Another PPV limitation is the number of times you can watch the movie or event you purchased. In terms of the movies, you can watch them as many times as you want within 24 hours of purchasing them, and however, you can only watch the live events once.

It would help if you also considered the time of day when placing an order for a live event. Place your order for a live event at least an hour before it begins or within 30 minutes after it begins. When it comes to watching the same event or movie on multiple receivers, however, there are no restrictions. You can easily tune in from multiple receivers without having to pay for each one separately.

In what circumstances would you be willing to pay for Pay-Per-View content?

If you can’t make it to an event, you might be willing to pay a fee to watch it online or at a later date.

You may be willing to pay a fee to gain access to someone or an organization that can stream exclusive content that would otherwise be difficult to obtain.

Is PPV Available in Other Languages?

PPV is not only available in English for those who are curious. If you are a member of the Hispanic community, Spectrum TV plans include exclusive channels for you, but PPV is also available in Spanish. This version, termed PPV en Espanol (PPVE), gives you access to everything Spanish in terms of LIVE events and movies. The availability of PPVE, on the other hand, is dependent on your location.

What Is the Future of Pay-Per-View Streaming?

Gone are the days when going to the movies on weekends was a must. Due to lockdowns, movie theaters have struggled to stay afloat since the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, streaming has grown in popularity worldwide as people seek to entertain themselves at home.

What does this mean for Pay-Per-View streaming, given that COVID-19 will be around for the foreseeable future alongside a continued demand for online streaming content?

While streaming services kept people entertained during the pandemic, it wasn’t enough; people sometimes want new, fresh, and on-demand content closer to the release time, so they don’t feel left out.

Are you thinking about including Pay-Per-View in your video package? Let us know in the comments box below.