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Streaming Is The Future But Who Will Be The Bulk Of The Audience?

As media moguls battle over the Ten network and as Optus cranks up their ‘entertainment’ content offering for portable devices consumers millennials are quickly changing their viewing habits new research has revealed.

Tech savvy consumers who currently stream at least some of the TV content are making life difficult for free to air TV stations and carriers looking to add value to the connected devices they are selling.

Currently, 70 percent of TV viewers who are 18 years and older — and a whopping 90 percent of 18-34-year-old viewers — stream at least some of the content they watch, according to Horowitz Research’s recent “State of Pay TV, OTT, and SVOD” annual survey.
The consumer survey was conducted in May online among 1,029 streamers.

Horowitz calls out the rollouts of Live TV on YouTube TV as new harbingers of competition to traditional pay TV providers.

The firm says these new digital MVPDs (dMVPDs) offer what the on-demand streaming services do not: They are viable alternatives to traditional pay TV, with the curation, choice, and control perks of streaming, plus the key benefits of traditional providers such as live TV catch up services and local broadcast.
Recently Foxtel moved to rebrand while also announcing new streaming options including a new “puck” device for homes.

The research from Horowitz also suggests 29 percent of TV content viewers express interest in subscribing to one of the new dMVPDs, and 30 percent among traditional pay TV subscribers.

While features associated with traditional pay TV providers are called out by respondents as a reason they take up a TV service in the first place, such as live TV, local broadcast channels, regional sports networks, DVR, and a variety of subscription networks, people also are looking for newer options. According to the Horowitz survey, they like when a service doesn’t require a contract and no additional hardware such as a dish or set-top. They also want the ability to access the entire service on various devices simultaneously both in and out of the home.

No surprise, but cost is key. Around 77 percent of those interested in a dMVPD say that to consider the service, the overall cost will need to be lower than having a cable or satellite subscription.

“These new services are a game-changer because they introduce a new narrative, one that doesn’t pit people who are willing to pay for pay TV against those who cord-cut,” Horowitz SVP of Insights and Strategy Adriana Waterston notes. “Instead, the new narrative is about those who choose to stay with a traditional provider against those who might choose to go with a new provider offering comparable services in a different way.”

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