Streaming catching up to traditional TV viewing

Streaming catching up to traditional TV viewing

Streaming is catching up, but watching programmes on a TV is still the most popular way for UK audiences to watch television.

Traditional viewing (which includes catch-up within 28 days), accounts for most TV viewing with an average of 3 hours and 12 minutes per day.

However, this does mark a drop of 11 minutes since 2017, and average viewing of streaming services rose to 26 minutes per day last year.

Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV…?

The most popular subscription video on demand (SVoD) platforms in the UK are;

  • Netflix,
  • Amazon Prime Video,
  • Now TV and
  • Disney Life

The number of UK households signed up to these platforms increased from 39% (11.2 million) in 2018 to 47% (13.3 million) in 2019. Two in five UK adults now consider online video services their main way of watching TV and film.

Viewers are also subscribing to more than one SVoD service.

Main broadcasters hold their share

However, despite this, the five main public broadcasters (BBC One, BBC Two, Channel 4, ITV/STV and Channel 5) held their share of viewing at 52%.

The decline of traditional TV viewing is most prevalent in the younger age group (16-24 years old) who have halved the amount of time they spend watching traditional TV since 2010.

Younger viewers move away from traditional TV

Since 2017, viewing by all people of subscription video on demand (SVoD) and YouTube content has grown.

The four and a half hours of total video content watched by 16-34s includes three main components: Live TV (83 mins); YouTube (64 mins) and SVoD (52 mins). For the youngest adults (aged 16-24), the most-watched platform is YouTube (73 mins).

But broadcaster-on-demand services (BVoD) are lagging behind SVoD. BVoD services (including iPlayer, ITV Hub, All4 and My5) remained at a similar overall level of viewing in 2018 compared to 2017; people in the UK are watching on average around 8 minutes of BVoD a day compared to 26 minutes of SVoD.

This has lead to BVoD platforms changing the way they serve content. For example, all episodes of series 1 (2018) and series 2 (2019) of the BBC’s Killing Eve were made available as a box set on BBC iPlayer immediately after the broadcast of the first episode. This caters to the ‘binge-watching’ trend that SVoD platforms cater for.

How has Wales’ TV viewing trends changed?

On average, people in Wales watched 3 hours 33 minutes of broadcast TV in 2018, that’s 9 minutes less than 2017.

Viewing of SVoD services increased by 10 minutes per person, per day in 2018, to 54 minutes.

48% of TV households in Wales have a television connected to the internet (Smart TV). 56% of adults in Wales use an on-demand/streaming service such as Netflix or BBC iPlayer.

Have your TV viewing habits changed over the past year? Could we help you use TV or SVoD to reach your audience? Get in touch today.

Sources: https://www.ofcom.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/160651/media-nations-2019-wales-report.pdf , https://www.ofcom.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/160714/media-nations-2019-uk-report.pdf , https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-49248030