The extent of media disruption often surprises those who instinctively feel television to be the dominant content delivery technology. Social media and streaming are still developing, while gaming is adding extra dimensions to a growing user base. The latest “Investing for the long term” podcast with Capital Group offers an overview of a rapidly changing media landscape.

Video games will soon surpass pay TV to be the largest home entertainment market,” said Richard Carlyle, an Equity Investment Director with Capital Group based in London. Gaming is a highly lucrative, dynamic sector that features strongly in the lives of many so-called Millennial and Zoomer generations. The world of social media is in flux, and even companies such as Google are coming under pressure. “One of the things we are trying to work out is whether these platforms are there for the long term, or whether we will see younger people regularly embracing new platforms,” continued Mr Carlyle.

This is contributing to consolidation in the industry as today’s dominant companies seek to consolidate and potentially future-proof their positions. Moreover, this is a global business. The US remains dominant regarding the provision of technological platforms, but the likes of TikTok and Tencent from China are clear challengers.

Content provision is highly international, with the latest hit movie, series or game as likely to come from Asia or Latin America as the US or Europe. Live sport delivers much that content providers and advertisers are seeking, and the growth in women’s events and changing tastes are creating fresh dynamics.

A great unknown is whether Meta’s multi-billion investment centring on the emergence of the “metaverse” will pay off, with wider implications for the industry. If this venture succeeds it could change the way that vast amounts of content are delivered and consumed. Alternatively, it could be an innovation that fails on its own terms, but potentially drives wider change.

Just as during the California gold rush, when it was the sellers of tools and work clothing that often benefited most, it could be the sectors serving these developments that experience the strongest growth,” he said. Firms that deliver greater, faster processing power could be given a further boost.

This episode is part of the second season of the “Investing for the long term” podcasts series featuring Capital Group. These monthly podcasts, produced and hosted by Delano and Paperjam, explain some of the key challenges investors are facing and the investment opportunities related to those challenges.

The first series can be accessed

To listen to Capital Group’s podcasts, click