Uscreen Review (Feb 2023): Your Guide to the Uscreen Video Platform
In this Uscreen review, we’ll be taking you on a tour of one of the more popular solutions for video creators looking to create a video on demand business. This all-in-one platform promises a convenient way for business owners to grow their streaming business. You can host, distribute, and even monetize your videos all in the same environment, with your own branding.
With Uscreen, creative individuals with an eye for video content can concentrate on making the best content, rather than having to deal with complex hosting and uploading processes. Notably however, this platform focuses exclusively on giving you the tools you need for video hosting, and it’s not exactly the same as other course creation platforms, like Teachable.
Here’s everything you need to know about Uscreen.
What is Uscreen? Features
Uscreen is an all-in-one video hosting and management platform. Think of it as a tool where you can publish your videos, and hopefully earn a little money for the content you create. It’s not the same as a platform like Twitch or YouTube. Instead, you get the services you need for a comprehensive Video on Demand business, including the ability to make a storefront, do live streams, and distribute specific videos through the web.
The core features of Uscreen include:
- Uploading and organizing: Bulk uploads, custom filters, and tags
- Streaming: Stream your content on-demand
- Stream live: Schedule events and host live streams
- Monetization: Subscriptions and one-time payments
- App creation: Build a unique app for your videos
- Analytics: Find out which content your customers like most
Essentially, Uscreen gives businesses the tools to launch their VOD business, develop a dedicated audience, and retain those customers. You can use a host of Uscreen video website themes and templates to make an excellent storefront for your audience with no coding required, then use marketing tools and community features to attract attention from watchers.
Uscreen Review: Website and App creation
When you sign up with the Uscreen, the first thing you’ll do is launch a branded streaming service. There are various website themes and templates to get you started, all focused around the video on demand industry.
Hosting is taken care of for you, and there’s no requirement for any coding knowledge to begin building. Once you choose a template or theme, you’ll have the freedom to customize everything from the text to the branded colors. The visual editor is pretty easy to use, but it’s also quite basic, which means you can’t make a lot of advanced changes.
You’ll be able to add various pages to your storefront aside from a homepage, but outside of the homepage, you don’t get a visual editor, only a text editor. This makes it hard to create a truly unique experience across all facets of your website.
You can access the “code editor” for more extensive changes. The code editor enables complete homepage customization and changes to your video catalog, but it does require coding knowledge. You’ll even get built-in sales and checkout pages for managing transactions, and a built-in catalog to enable a stronger browsing experience.
A bonus of the Uscreen website building experience is the one-click translation feature which automatically translates your website content in up to 25 languages. You can also use the “Geo blocking” feature to restrict access to certain pieces of content in certain countries.
If you’re feeling particularly confident, you can also use the Uscreen landscape to create your own consistent, quality apps for mobile. The over-the-top applications, or OTT apps use the internet to stream and deliver videos to both mobile devices, and smart TVs using things like Roku Box, and AppleTV or Amazon Fire TV.
There’s no coding required to build your own app, and the OTT platform comes with all the basic functionality you need for theming your videos and making them look great. You can add your own branding, change colors, and even set up detailed analytics to ensure you’re learning about your customers and their preferences over time.
Uscreen website and app creation features include:
- SSL security certificates
- Set your own language with multiple global options
- Included hosting
- Choose your own custom domain
- SEO technology
- Detailed analytics
- CMS with centralized content management
Uscreen Review: Video Content Management
The video CMS is one of the most important parts of Uscreen’s feature list. An account will give you full inbuilt video hosting, so you don’t need another solution to upload your videos to your website. Uploading is also reasonably fast and straightforward, and you can access content in your Dropbox account too.
The uploading interface can also connect to other video hosting platforms like Wistia and Vimeo, so it’s easy to migrate from one environment to another if you need one. There’s also a variety of ways to optimize your videos once they’re listed in your account. For instance, when you click on a specific video in your collection, you’ll be able to add titles and descriptions, implement subtitles, enable download, and set up basic SEO with titles, slugs, and search tags.
Uscreen also ensures you can change how your video looks on the frontend of your website too. You can upload custom thumbnails for the video player and catalog and modify video appearance too.
Perhaps the biggest headache with the Uscreen interface is that you’ll need to modify and customize videos on an individual basis, as there’s no bulk editing functionality. This can take a little while if you have a large number of videos. On the plus side, there are various ways to categorize and group your videos to help you navigate your collection.
You can create categories and assign your videos to one or more segments in your list. There’s also the option to create custom “filters” for your video catalog which helps your users to search through the content they need. You could even create a filter for different “levels” of your education strategy, and add filter options like beginner, intermediate, and advanced.
Collection on Uscreen are another way to group videos together. You can break your collection down into various chapters, and drip content according to your own schedule. There’s also the option to organize videos into custom playlists.
The comprehensive video content management system from Uscreen features:
- Built-in hosting for all kinds of content
- Offline and online video management
- Multi-device delivery for all videos
- Live streaming and on-demand playback
- Pay-per-view or subscription payments
- Video scheduling and automatic publishing
- Custom thumbnails
- SEO meta data for searchability
- Closed captions and subtitles
- Custom filters and smart playlists
- Access rules with geo blocking
Video Player and Live Streaming
As a leading tool for video content management and playback, it only makes sense Uscreen would have a powerful video player. The HTML5 online video player promises smooth playback on any device, with amazing cross-device HD quality viewing.
Uscreen promises it’s state-of-the-art HTML5 video player is specially designed for the era of video on demand content, as well as over-the-top delivery services. The solution is fully white-labelled, and reliable, so you can make the right impression on your audience. There’s also extensive support for VTT captions and screen readers too.
Because the video player is backed up by a leading global CDN, you can also rest assured your audiences will be able to access the content anywhere in the world. Regardless of physical location, your users will enjoy their content wherever they are. Features include:
- Cast to TV: Broadcast via Apple Airplay and Chromecast
- Speed controls: Your viewers can easily take control of their viewing experience
- Closed captions: Add closed captions to videos easily, with optional subtitles
- CDN delivery: Powered by two global CDNs
- Mini video player: picture-in-picture content users can move around their screens
- Playback on any device: Seamless cross-device delivery
- Multi bitrate HLS streaming: Use smart algorithms to pick the right rendition for users
- Chapters, episodes and playlists: Organize your video content easily
- Autoplay: Intuitive auto playback
Uscreen also offers a live-streaming feature, so you can take your online presence to the next level. The solution provides a complete five-star viewing experience with live chat, streaming capabilities, mobile apps and TV apps. There’s also the option to add monetization to your live streams, so you can generate revenue through pay-per-view and subscription packages.
To enable engagement, Uscreen has a live chat function, so you can interact with your viewers as they’re streaming and allow them to communicate with each other. There’s also support for live streaming to any device. You can go live beyond the web, straight to native mobile, and so much more, with a multi-bitrate adaptive streaming service.
There’s also a “go-live” notification service which gives your audience members a nudge via email and in-app notifications to let them know when you’re starting the stream. Features include:
- Live event countdown
- Auto-record to video on demand
- Pre-registration page
- Live chat function
Uscreen Review: Pricing
Finally, we come to the Uscreen pricing section. There are few different pricing packages available, and they all offer 20% off if you choose to pay annually instead of monthly. If you choose to pay monthly, the prices are:
- Basic: $99 per month with 50 hours of video storage, 1 admin user, an onboarding session, email support, custom website, flexible pricing options, and marketing tools. There’s also automation, business/customer insights, and access to the Uscreen accelerator program.
- Growth: $199 per month with 150 hours of video bandwidth, 10 admin users, 3 onboarding sessions, email and chat support. Ecommerce integration is included, as well as Zapier and 3rd party integrations.
- Uscreen Plus: Quote available on request: This gives you everything from the Growth package, plus mobile apps, TV streaming apps, live streaming and chat, white label branding, and live stream analytics.
Keep in mind that all of the packages for the Uscreen VOD platform do offer things like a 99% uptime guarantee, to help improve user experience. There are also various ways to monetize videos with each package, and integration with tools like email marketing for nurturing leads.
Uscreen Video Monetization
Probably the most important feature of Uscreen for most users, will be the ability to Monetize your content. The turn-key monetization platform allows users to build a comprehensive video streaming business, with various options for making money. Currently, Uscreen is one of the leading services on the market for distributing premium content.
The variety of payment options available mean you can choose exactly what kind of business you most want to run. For instance, you can offer:
- Free trials: If you want to improve your chances of captivating customers, a free trial means customers can test your content for free, for a limited period. Uscreen will automatically rescind access when the time runs out.
- Subscription: Subscription features allow companies to offer customers access to subscription content consistently, with a recurring fee.
- Pay per view: For events and one-off video experiences, you can monetize content for a specific one-time view, and determine how long customers should have access to it.
- Rentals: Rental content allows you to charge for limited-time access to your content. This is ideal if you only want to enable video access for a specific time.
- Lifetime access: For a one-time fee, you can also provide your customers with lifetime access to all of your video content.
Uscreen video monetization also comes with access to a range of payment options, so you can access your money through things like PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.net, and credit card payments. There’s also the option to take a range of payment types so your customers have more choice.
Perhaps most crucially, Uscreen also enables global streaming on a massive scale. You can accept more than 130 currencies worldwide using the various gateway options from Uscreen, just make sure you’re aware of the transaction fees involved with each provider, or you could risk losing some of your hard-earned cash.
Interestingly, Uscreen also provides “in-app” purchases for mobile and smart TV, with the option to accept payments from within those app environments. Alternatively, you can also consider things like royalty payments, which are trackable from within your profile account. There are also various other insights available – but we’ll come back to that in a moment.
For additional growth opportunities, Uscreen enables affiliate program creation, which means you can build a network of partners to assist you in marketing your streaming service. The “Rewardful” integration provided by the company makes it easier to automate payment delivery when an affiliate successfully drives custom to your company.
Overall, for monetization, Uscreen offers a highly flexible and impressive range of options, with ready-to-use checkout templates and tools to assist in converting more leads. Features include:
- Free and freemium trial: Start off with a free trial or freemium video to grow and nurture your audience, then convert your audience into paying customers.
- Upsells and cross-sells: Easily advertise related content to your customers and improve your chances of transforming them into long-term clients
- Promotions and coupons: Create a host of discount coupons and special offers, so you can delight your audience quickly and easily.
- Customizable branding: Easily customize every part of your streaming and branding website, with a high-converting homepage, catalog page, checkout page, and more.
- Secured SSL: Enable subscribers to submit payments with assurance, confidence, and safety, with an extensive SSL-secured checkout process.
- Flexible pay-outs: Uscreen can pay your money directly into your system with Stripe, PayPal, and the Uscreen payment gateway
- Sale tracking: Access robust reporting tools to identify the best content in your roster, so you can improve your chances of conversions later
Uscreen Review: Video Marketing
Uscreen doesn’t just give you the tools you need to upload and host your video content, it can also improve your chances of getting eyes on your videos too. Though you’ll still need to do the majority of your promotion work yourself, you can improve your chances of conversions with things like exclusive offers and giveaway funnels to nurture your leads.
Crucially, there’s also plenty of tools to help you keep track of your customer base and start improving retention. For instance, the Uscreen Community features are designed specifically to help you improve your connection with your target audience.
With Uscreen Community, you can spark a conversation quickly and conveniently with comments, fuelling discussions and responding to comments with a native chat feature within your video streaming environment. In live streams, the chat feature means you can engage customers in real-time and include your audience in your conversation. This keeps the discussion going, so your viewers are less likely to lose interest and stray elsewhere.
One particularly impressive feature is the option to allow users to create their own user profiles and avatars. Users can optimize their profiles and edit information about themselves, for better community interactions with new and existing friends.
The easy flow of communication within the community section of Uscreen’s tools is excellent for business leaders hoping to create a more active tribe of followers.
Outside of the “community” part of Uscreen’s features, users still get a huge variety of tools for promotion to choose from. There’s a host of ways to generate and convert leads, such as:
- Customer tracking: Tracking for customer journeys ensures you can maintain your client’s attention wherever they go. There’s even automatic “win-back” workflows for abandoned cart cases, so you can minimize churn.
- Sales and product pages: Users can build highly responsive and optimized landing pages to convert visitors into leads. The Uscreen landing page builder is incredibly easy to use.
- Marketing funnels: Extensive funnels with plenty of guidance help you to make the most of your relationships with possible customers.
- Integrations: A host of available integrations ensure you can connect your existing tools with your streaming solutions.
- Upselling: Subscription upselling solutions allow businesses to offer subscriptions at the end of the checkout workflow for better business results.
Uscreen Review: Reporting and Security
To help ensure content creators are getting the best results from their campaigns, Uscreen offers a range of reporting features and analytics. You can visit your video page to see information about things like “watch time”, which helps to determine whether your customers are sticking with your video from start to finish.
In the sales tab, you’ll see a range of reports for monthly and annual sales too. There’s a dedicated reporting section to show you how many coupons have been used. Plus, there’s the option to track pay-outs too.
For better peace of mind and ongoing performance, Uscreen also has a range of control features. There’s a “people” section within your account where you can manage your relationships with customers. Clicking on a specific customer shows you their entire purchasing history. Uscreen also supports adding team members to your website, so you don’t have to go it alone.
You can monetize your videos safely and securely, with private video on demand, and full data ownership, so there’s less risk of a problem with your content. The built-in security system includes SSL security, 24/7 monitoring, 99.99% uptime guarantees, and secured payment gateways.
Uscreen review: Customer Support
There’s more to the best streaming platform than affordable subscription plans and social media integrations. Tools like the Uscreen platform also need to offer assistance when you need it. This video on demand platform comes with an extensive knowledge base where you’ll learn how to use Uscreen as effectively as possible.
The Uscreen video monetization platform also has a dedicated support system with very responsive agents available via email. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to get help for on demand video through any other channel, like phone or chat unless you pay extra. This can make it feel like the Uscreen customer support is quite lacking. It would definitely help for the Uscreen team to have more support channels to choose from.
Uscreen Review: Verdict
Uscreen is a fantastic tool for people looking to monetize their video streaming strategy. With access to a basic plan for beginners, API support for developers, and so much more, Uscreen can support a wide range of use cases. If you’ve ever wanted to build a business which takes advantage of the age of Android TV, and Netflix, Uscreen could be the tool for you.
Perhaps the most compelling part of Uscreen is how easy it is to use. With mobile support for iOS and Android, as well as easy access to videos online, Uscreen has a lot to offer. The solution can really amplify your presence online, whether you’re a small business or enterprise.