Content Wars Ramp Up As Oz SVOD Subs Pass 12M
More than half of all Australian households now have SVOD subscriptions, many of them to multiple services, as local subscriptions pass 12 million and existing platforms scrap for content ahead of more providers entering the market.
Subscription numbers grew by almost 30 per cent in the year to June, now totaling 12.3 million according to tech analysis firm Telsyte.
A survey conducted by the firm put the average monthly budget to cover all SVOD services at around $30, but around a third of those surveyed said they didn’t have a limit on how many subscriptions they maintained.
Comparatively, a subscription to Foxtel currently starts at $49 ($58 with sport), and that’s as part of a promotion for its new IQ4 with Netflix integration.
Telsyte’s Australian Entertainment Subscription Study 2019 found Netflix ($13.99 a month for HD) had the most subscribers with 4.9 million.
Sports streaming service Kayo ($25 a month) has raced past 300,000 subscriptions in less than a year thanks to exclusive content, a lack of real competition and comparatively cheap pricing.
Telsyte put the sports SVOD sector at 4.4 million subscribers.
This number excludes Foxtel Now subscribers but is inflated by Optus Sport and competition specific “Live Pass” platforms for NRL, AFL, Netball and Soccer that are often included in Telstra plans and could well go unused.
Telsyte said content rights and availability will be a key factor in the coming years as the industry braces for the introduction of Apple’s TV+ streaming service and Disney+, which will bundle with Hulu and ESPN+.
The content behemoth’s properties are likely to disappear from rival SVOD services following the launch, which could greatly impact Stan and Kayo, who have sizeable libraries of Disney and ESPN content respectively.
Telsyte says a quarter of Australians (and 37 per cent of SVOD subscribers) are interested in subscribing to Disney.
Streaming music has also continued to grow, with more than 12 million users, 42 per cent of whom pay for a subscription.
Spotify, Google, and Apple continue to dominate.
Telsyte credits the growth in music streaming to the rise of smart speakers and larger data caps from telcos, some of whom also bundle subscriptions and allow unmetered data usage on select streaming services.
Gaming subscription services are also growing as consumers get used to subscription models.
Telsyte said gaming will become a major entertainment subscription segment.
The firm said Australians have already taken up more than 4 million gaming related subscriptions, but this also includes console subscriptions like PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold, which is required to play online multiplayer.
Telsyte expects the segment to quadruple in the next four years as internet connections get faster and new services like Apple Arcade and Google Stadia reach more mainstream users.