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Consumers worldwide increasingly depend on smartphones to access digital content and tend to go online to purchase video games, movies and books, according to the latest State of Digital Downloads research report – based on a survey of 3,500 consumers ranging in age, gender, and education in France, Germany, India, Japan, Korea, the UK, and the US – from digital content delivery specialist Limelight Networks.
Highlighting consumers’ shifting demand for both streaming and downloading content, the annual report found that only 14 per cent of all respondents still prefer to rent or purchase DVDs of movies and TV shows, and only 25 per cent prefer hard copies of books or traditional print media. In comparison, two-thirds (66 per cent) of respondents prefer to stream or download TV shows and movies, while 38 per cent prefer to download books, newspapers, and magazines. When it comes to music, almost half (46 per cent) of respondents say they prefer to download music rather than stream it or purchase a CD.
Comparatively, European respondents’ entertainment consumption is similar, with 13 per cent of European consumers preferring to rent or purchase DVDs of films and TV shows. Around 15 per cent of German and UK respondents opt to consume entertainment through these traditional mediums, compared to just 9 per cent of their French counterparts. The preferences for streaming rather than downloading content continues to grow. Notably, two-thirds of European consumers (62 per cent) prefer to download or stream TV shows and movies. The highest streaming rate is observed in France at 49 per cent, compared to 42 and 40 per cent in the UK and Germany, respectively.
More than one third (37 per cent) of German consumers choose to download books and magazines, with the UK (36 per cent) and France (30 per cent) not far behind. German respondents are 58 per cent less likely to consider obtaining hard copies. Similarly, respondents in Germany and the UK (34 per cent) opt to download music in comparison with less than a third (25 per cent) of French consumers. Instead French respondents are 56 per cent more likely to stream music.
“Digital content is now the preferred format for media consumption by a growing mobile-first audience,” says Michael Milligan, Senior Director at Limelight Networks. “There’s no question that content needs to be easily accessible and optimised across all connected devices and global networks if it’s to reach the widest possible audience and provide the best experience. This is no longer a feature for providers, but a necessity for survival.”
Additional insights from the report include: