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Streaming Taking Off ‘Live Sport’ In Demand From Carriers

The move away from free to air TV has intensified, with demand for streaming services such as Netflix and Stan rising by 54% according to new Telsyte research.

Stan now has one million subscribers with the overall market now sitting at 9.1 million.

It’s also been revealed that Australians are taking to sports streaming services from telecommunications companies and Foxtel. Live sports services from Telstra’s AFL, NRL and Netball Live exceeding 1.5 million users at the end of June 18.

Optus who were accused of “screwing up” the streaming of the recent World Cup is refusing to say how many subscribers they actually attracted however Telsyte claims that 2 million Australians tuned in to the FIFA World Cup via Optus Sport before it crashed.

Telsyte managing director Foad Fadaghi said Optus’ technical problems would likely be a short-term problem and its figures showed consumers were starting to embrace the piecemeal nature of on-demand services, rather than big pay TV bundles.

“As we have seen with other carriers, the damage [from technical problems] can be mitigated with the issues being resolved over time. It should be a wake-up call for Optus, which should result in improvements to its customers going forward,” Mr Fadaghi said.

“The figures show consumer are starting to collect subscriptions like they used to collect other forms of entertainment. They are diversifying their subscriptions to as wide as their interest, spanning TV, movies, children’s content and sports, with trial periods, low entry price points and the ability to cancel being drivers.”

The research firm compiles its figures from a combination of online surveys with viewers, interviews with executives from service providers, network operators, content providers, retailers, and hardware manufacturers and streaming company reports.

The findings show that while pay TV numbers have remained reasonably steady in the past year, Australians are becoming increasingly comfortable with multiple subscription offerings in the VOD market, and are subscribing to multiple providers for distinct offerings, including original content and live sports.

Telsyte estimated 43 per cent of Australian households subscribed to SVOD services at the end of June 2018, an increase from around 30 per cent a year ago.

Netflix is believed to have around 3.9 million Australian subscribers with Stan passing the 1 million mark at the end of June and remaining the second-largest single service. A major contributor is believed to be the bundling of SVOD services into new TV’s including both large and small models.

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