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Study: Just 38% of UK streaming more than last year

July 14, 2023

Research from consultancy firm Simon-Kucher into consumer streaming behaviour and preferences reveals that the growth of streaming is slowing down. In its second annual Global Streaming Study, Simon-Kucher reveals that only 38 per cent of UK respondents indicate they stream more compared to last year – this is down 10 percentage points from the number of consumers who indicated their streaming habits were up year-over-year in 2022. The study also revealed the average number of owned subscriptions per respondent in the UK is 2; down 10 per cent from last year.

“As the number of streaming subscriptions available to UK consumers continues to increase, the budgets of those consumers isn’t getting any larger and they’re actually becoming more price sensitive. Add to this the fact that a significant portion of subscribers are already overwhelmed with the amount of content they currently have access to, and providers will need to work hard to distinguish themselves in a saturated market” said Greg Harwood, Partner at Simon-Kucher.

The majority continue to use streaming services to watch films and series rather than live events

Compared to last year, streaming of both films and series has declined slightly in the UK – 71 per cent of consumers spend more than two hours per week watching movies (a decline of 7 percentage points), while 76 per cent spend more than two hours per week watching TV series (a decline of 2 percentage points). Live events (e.g. sports) are significantly lower at only 37 per cent of respondents spending more than two hours per week watching these (flat versus last year).

Purchase drivers are holding steady, as are overall budgets

Year-over-year, purchase criteria for UK consumers are largely unchanged. Price is the most important purchase criterion, followed by breadth of content available. The importance of frequency of new content is down four percentage points, potentially due to the amount of new players and content on the market. Nearly half (46 per cent) of UK respondents can be classified as being in the ‘price sensitive’ segment, a slight increase from last year and larger than other segments (41 per cent being in the ‘price-value oriented’ segment and 13 per cent in the ‘value oriented’ segment).

Overall monthly budgets that UK respondents were willing to spend on streaming subscriptions in the stayed flat compared to last year.

Subscription fatigue is on the rise and cost savings are a key reason to drop subscriptions

UK consumers stated that they find themselves increasingly overwhelmed with the content they have access to in their streaming subscriptions (33 per cent, an increase of 3 percentage points vs 2022). In addition, they are finding it increasingly hard to manage the number of streaming subscriptions they have (17 per cent, an increase of 2 percentage points).

Nearly a quarter (22 per cent) of UK consumers cancelled an existing subscription within the last 12 months, a similar portion to last year (a decrease of 1 percentage point). When combined with the fact that the average number of subscriptions paid for by these consumers has gone down by 10 per cent this indicates that consumers are signing up to fewer new subscriptions than they were this time last year.

For those UK consumers who did churn, the key reason cited was saving money – 52 per cent indicated this was the reason for their decision, a 4 percentage point increase on 2022.

Categories: Articles, Consumer Behaviour, Premium, Research, VOD

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