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Retailers Benefit From Massive Move To Netflix

Australian’s are moving to streaming in the millions and along the way they are buying new Smart TV’s, Chromecast sticks and services such as Fetch TV.

According to Scott Lorsen the CEO of Fetch TV his business is booming due in part to Optus expanding their content and broadband services and demand for a media player with easy access to Netflix.

Last month Fetch TV added over 30,000 new users.

In the three months to December 2015 Australians who have moved to watching IP delivered content, went through a record 1.7 Exabyte’s of data – or 1.7 million terabytes which is 50 per cent more than in the same period in 2014.

At the same time retailers such as JB Hi Fi are witnessing increased demand for devices and TV’s that can deliver Netflix and smart TV services.

The figures supplied by the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveal that services such as Netflix and to a lesser degree Stan and Presto are driving the growth in demand for data.

The move to IP based delivery of content has had a major impact on Foxtel who has been forced to restructure after laying off staff and axing programs.

Approximately 2.7 million Australians are now estimated to watch Netflix, and at last count, number-two player Stan – which is joint owned by Fairfax Media and Channel Nine – had more than 700,000 subscribers.

Australians are increasingly opting for these services – as well as free-to-air catch-up TV services such as ABC’s iView – over traditional broadcast free-to-air and pay TV viewing, which don’t require an internet connection.

Research firm Ovum predicts there will be more than 4.7 million SVOD subscribers in Australia by 2019.

In the four years to December 2011, the number of Australian internet subscriptions grew from around 7 million to 12 million, the ABS data show. In the four years since, however, only 1 million more subscriptions have been added – but the amount each subscription is downloading has more than quadrupled.

Fairfax Media said that the average individual internet plan – whether it be a fixed-line home connection, mobile phone data plan, or another type of connection – consumed 44GB of data downloads per month at the end of 2015, up from 10GB in 2011. In 2014, before the streaming services took off, we were only downloading 30GB a month.

The ongoing rollout of the national broadband network, bringing fast broadband internet connections to more Australians, has also likely factored in the growth in downloads.

Almost all Australian internet connections – 99 per cent – are now broadband.

However, under the multi-technology mix NBN, the quality and speed of a connection differs depending on whether a household’s connection is full fibre, a mix of fibre and copper, hybrid-fibre coaxial cable, fixed wireless or satellite broadband.

Fibre-to-the-premises connections doubled in the year to December 31 to 645,000 subscribers, the ABS data show. Mobile wireless and cable connections grew incrementally, while DSL connections fell by 69,000.

NBN chief technology officer Dennis Steiger told Fairfax Media that a “significant increase in usage” over the NBN network showed the more bandwidth Australians have, the more content they want to consume.

“The findings reveal our nation has well and truly embraced the global streaming revolution as services such as Netflix, Stan and Presto have redefined the way we view and consume content,” Mr Steiger said.

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