Advanced Television

Research: 70% would use a free Netflix with ads

November 16, 2016

Digitalsmiths, a TiVo company, and specialist in personalised content discovery technology, has released the 15th edition of its quarterly Video Trends Report covering key topics across pay-TV, VoD, PPV, OTT, TV Everywhere, connected devices, and content discovery (now branded TiVo’s Q3 2016 Video Trends Report).

Based on a survey of over 3,100 consumers, the Q3 2016 Video Trends Report sheds light on many topics. Highlights include:

Respondents’ sentiments toward free OTT– It’s no secret that the video industry is evolving, with new services emerging, and existing services continuously innovating as well as marketing new packages, price structures, and offerings. Therefore, TiVo wanted to determine how far these services could go to gain adoption.

New to TiVo’s Q3 2016 Video Trends Report is a question that asks: “If Netflix or Hulu offered a free TV service requiring viewers to watch commercials, would the respondent consider using it?” The results are: 69.4 per cent of respondents answered yes, with the bulk of respondents (83.3 per cent) willing to watch one to four commercials in a 30-minute period. Of those uninterested in a free service with commercials, it is interesting to note that 14.3 per cent are open to commercials if content is personalised to their interests and/or viewing preferences.

À la carte and free OTT– is it the future of pay-TV? Because the results discussed above are new to the report, TiVo’s Data Science Team conducted a deeper analysis to see if correlations exist between those interested in free OTT versus other trends. After further analysis, TiVo’s Data Science Team discovered a strong correlation between those who want an à la carte pay-TV offering, and those who would like a free streaming service with commercials offered by Netflix or Hulu. While it was apparent that a large population (78 per cent) of respondents desire à la carte pay-TV, what the Data Science Team found striking was that of those respondents who want à la carte, 75.8 per cent would also use a free streaming service.

While the industry has talked at length about how cutting pay-TV service in order to bundle various video services can often cost more than a pay-TV package, TiVo’s survey reveals that this may actually be what consumers want. Is the winning combination an à la carte package of about 18 channels for $29.46/per month, plus a free streaming service with commercials?


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