Half of Australian pay-TV HH buy SVOD, too; Streaming hours are growing

Watching live sports

Netflix is still the top SVOD service in Australia with more than 5.3 million viewers. But Stan and YouTube Premium each now top a million subscribers, as more than half of all adult consumers – and half of all pay-TV households (HH) – now are subscribing to at least one paid streaming service.

And, viewing time is up, too. SVOD subscribers are watching nearly 10 hours of content each week on the 1.9 services they average, according to a survey of 2,100 Australian Internet users by AMPD Research. And that doesn’t include sports, which likely adds another two or more hours to the total. AMPD says about 20% of adults subscribe to a sports service.

Use of streaming services appears to be fairly unspecific, in terms of age, with slightly more than half (52%) of users under 45 paying for a streaming service, and just less than half (48%) of users over 45 doing the same.

“Australian consumers have embraced subscription streaming services at a pace that is unmatched in any other major developed economy we have examined,” posits Anthony Dobson, managing director of AMPD Research. The similarity in rates of take-up between young and old viewers, he says, “underscores how paying for streaming video is becoming mainstream behavior in Australia.”

Satisfaction = more viewing time, revenue

More important, perhaps, is the satisfaction consumers say they feel toward their streaming services, an indication there’s plenty of room for growth.

AMPD Net Promoter Score for  SVOD/OTT services

More than one-third (37%) said they would recommend an SVOD services to other people, with only 28% saying they would not, a “Net Promoter Score” of +9. Among specific services measured, Netflix users were most satisfied (a +41 NPS). Stan was next (+26) , followed by YouTube Premium (+20), Kayo Sports (+15) and Foxtel Now (+12).

The mean NPS for all SVOD entertainment services was +15, while sports services scored +2.

Viewers spent more time with Netflix than any other non-sport SVOD service, not surprising as it’s the top SVOD revenue generator with the top share of HH spend (42%).

Foxtel Now’s service earned more per household than any other SVOD service, driven by its A$29 per-month price tag, but Foxtel-backed Kayo Sports led in viewing time, riding the back of Indian Premier Cricket. The service, though, also had the highest proportion of free trials among all services, which also likely contributed to viewing time.

Content is key

But, just because there’s a broad level of satisfaction with SVOD delivery, doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of room for improvement.

A recent survey from PcW said Australians appear increasingly willing to pay for additional OTT content.

Consumers crave local content, and that genre could be a significant leg up for SVOD services looking to break into the market. A full three-quarters of users want more of it.

There is a thirst among younger viewers for more US content and a broader selection of comedy. While viewers over 45 said they wanted more content from the UK, especially action and adventure titles. Neither sports nor kids’ content made it into the Top 5 genres of content that viewers wanted to see more of, which may suggest a level of satisfaction – for now.

While HHs paid an average of A$35.30 a month for SVOD entertainment, sports spend was less than one-third of that at A$11.94, and it was spread across of plethora of services. NRL made up 54% of HH sports spend, Kayo 21%, AFL 14% and beIn at 6% and Optus (D@C) at 5%.

The bottom line

This is a consumer-led revolution, and content owners who don’t pay close heed to the desires of their audience risk – more so than ever before – falling off the pace, or worse. As streaming becomes more mainstream, customers’ perception of value will become more crucial – especially as more services emerge.

As to content, more will always be better. As Disney+ streams into the market, kids’ programming will move front and center, and HH with children in them will definitely be in play. 

Live sports – and all of the shoulder content that goes along with it – makes up an immense proportion of traditional broadcast and pay TV, and it will grow in importance in the streaming world as latency continues to improve and as streaming further distrupts the traditional pay-TV package.

Stay tuned.

Jim O’Neill is Principal Analyst at Brightcove. You can follow him on Twitter @JimONeillMedia and on LinkedIn