Pay-Per-View (commonly abbreviated as PPV) is any form of content consumption whereby a subscriber of a regular television service purchases an event to view via private telecast sent to their (and other purchasing households') receiver. PPV is broadly the entire set of telecommunication protocols and Business Models around TV providers offering this "content for rental" type of service to subscribers.
The broadcaster shows the event during a limited time, and it is constantly being sent out at the same time to everyone ordering it (as opposed to VOD systems, which allow viewers to see recorded broadcasts at any time on an archived basis where there is much less urgency around needing to purchase and/or view within a very limited timeframe). In PPV systems, events are usually purchased using an on-screen guide, an automated telephone system, or through a live customer service representative.
PPV is most commonly used to distribute events including feature films, sporting events and other entertainment programs. The most common categories are without a doubt (in order of popularity) combat sports events (i.e. Boxing, Mixed Martial Arts & professional Wrestling), Adult content (i.e. softcore & hardcore pornography), feature films (i.e. mainstream blockbusters from Hollywood, Bollywood & award-winning foreign films), special events (i.e. film festivals, film awards shows, live concerts, major fundraisers/telethon type events).
With the rise of the internet, the term Internet Pay-Per-View (iPPV) has also been used to describe services accessed online which follow the exact PPV model where there is urgency around both purchasing and consuming some specific time-delimited content. An example of iPPV would be a sporting event listed in a the Electronic Programming Guide (EPG) of a broader OTT or Online Video service with a "consumer_paid" type of flag which would then be flipped once the consumer has paid. Once flipped the consumer would be able to access the content during duration of event and later for re-watch during a period starting from the "start_time" for a specific number of "days/hours_of_access". Like PPV, in iPPV the most popular items such as sporting events or huge concerts usually would be accessible for 24-48 hours from purchase while Movies or special TV shows/mini-series would be accessible for at most 7-days (harkening back to the old days of traditional brick-and-mortar video rental stores where "new releases" were due back the next day and older titles were able to be taken out for a up to a week).
Pay-Per-Use (less commonly abbreviated as PPU) is similar to a rental or leasing arrangement, however the number of times a particular service or product may be used is once per pay event by the customer (i.e. an exchange is undertaken to exchange money or other goods/services for the Pay-Per-Use goods/services, each time they are utilized. The goods/services are then returned or always retained by the seller after (and during) the consumption of the goods/services by the buyer.
- wikipedia: Pay-per-view
- Viewers Choice Canada Winding Down: http://www.multichannel.com/news/networks/viewers-choice-canada-winding-down/382680 (Bell, Rogers-Owned Pay-Per-View Provider Closing Sept. 30)