More US consumers are defaulting to streaming for their television and movie viewing. This includes ad-supported platforms. In fact, the latest data [download page] from Hub Entertainment Research reveals that of the 81% of people who use at least one ad-free TV platform, 95% also use at least one ad-supported platform.
The December 2021 survey of more than 3,000 people (ages 14-74) who watch at least one hour of TV per week shows that some 8 in 10 (81%) use a subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service. This is up slightly from a similar survey in June 2021 (79%).
By comparison, ad-supported video-on-demand (AVOD) services use has gained steam at a faster clip. Nearly half (47%) of respondents report using AVOD services – including those platforms with ad-supported tiers available. That’s up about a third from the percentage who used AVOD services in June 2021 (35%). The report notes that this growth might be due, in part, to HBO Max’s ad-supported tier, which was launched in June 2021 and was not part of the earlier wave of data.
Viewers don’t appear to have an aversion to ads, especially if those ads save them money. Platforms that are available for free with ads are used by nearly three-fifths (57%) of viewers. Additionally, 6 in 10 respondents say they would choose ads if it costs $4 to $5 less than the ad-free version.
In terms of the number of ads on the various platforms, more respondents consider the number of ads on AVOD platforms to be reasonable than those who say the same about ads on live TV. More specifically, a majority say that the number of ads on Discovery+ (60%), Paramount+ (55%) and HBO Max (55%) are reasonable, while only 21% say they consider live TV to have a reasonable number of ads.
The majority of streaming subscribers say they are very likely to still be subscribed to the various services in the next 3 months, whether they are on the ad-free tier or ad-supported tier. Nevertheless, fewer say they will very likely still subscribe to the ad-supported tiers of HBO Max, Paramount+ and Peacock in the next 3 months than those who subscribe to the ad-free tier. The one exception is Discovery+, where 78% say they will still subscribe to the ad-supported tier and 69% say they will continue to subscribe to the ad-free tier.
An excerpt of the report can be found here.
About the Data: Findings are based on a December 2021 survey of 3,038 people ages 14-74 who watched at least one hour of TV per week.