Various pieces of research – such as this one – have suggested that consumers who stream video do so to complement their traditional TV viewing, rather than entirely replace it. Now, a new study [pdf] from Ericsson ConsumerLab adds to the body of research about the behaviors of different segments of video viewers, finding that in general, consumers who don’t pay for managed TV spend less time overall watching video.
The survey was fielded across 20 countries with more than 20,000 weekly viewers of video/TV who have broadband at home. Of note, respondents were aged 16-59; this is important as, at least in the US, older consumers are the heaviest traditional TV viewers.
That’s not the case in this latest report, though. In divvying up respondents by managed TV spending and age group, the study reveals that Millennials (aged 16-34) self-reported spending more time watching video each week than older respondents (35-59), regardless of their managed TV spending.
Another result emerged from the study: regardless of age, respondents who pay for managed TV self-reported spending more time each week watching video than those who had cut the cord or never subscribed.
On the surface, that makes sense: voracious video consumers are probably more likely to consider subscribing to both pay-TV and subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services than others. For “cord-nevers” (those who have never paid for managed TV), the report notes that “the focus is not on getting more content to consume, but rather having the means of accessing quality content when they have time to spend watching TV and video.”
In fact, the study also reveals that in comparison with managed TV consumers, cord-nevers spend less time viewing downloaded or streamed on-demand series, movies and other programs.
For these light video viewers, then, there’s not a compelling reason for signing up to pay-TV services, and only 16% believe that they will in the future. (Another 34% don’t know.) So while the need to save money is the leading reason cited in the study for cord-cutting, dissatisfaction with pay-TV’s value or affordability aren’t key reasons for not paying for a managed TV service. Instead, the top factor (cited by 58%) cord-nevers give for avoiding a pay-TV service is simply that they have not felt the need to sign up. Also of interest: just 15% said that they haven’t signed up for a pay-TV service because they get all the content they need from other services (such as Netflix and YouTube).
The study contains other interesting results regarding the shift in the ways in which TV is consumed:
- Scheduled linear TV continues to be the most common method of watching video content on a daily basis, but is rapidly being challenged by streamed on-demand video;
- Consumers spend the largest proportion of their viewing time watching TV series and movies according to a fixed schedule;
- Limiting the analysis to 9 key markets, the report reveals that 41% of respondents watch YouTube at least daily, up from 27% in 2011;
- Almost 9 in 10 (87%) of SVOD users across the 20 countries report binge-viewing at least once a week, compared to 74% of non-SVOD users;
- Some 41% of US consumers say they watch YouTube every day, compared to 27% who use Netflix with that frequency;
- Three-quarters of S-VOD users globally say they have and use a TV with access to internet content, compared to 47% of non-SVOD users;
- The share of video and TV content consumed on mobile devices and laptops is growing at the expense of consumption on TV screens and desktops;
- Teenagers (16-19) estimate spending more than 60% of all their TV and video hours watching on a mobile device;
- Almost 9 in 10 (86% of) US smartphone users say they watch video content on their smartphones and almost 8 in 10 (78%) have accessed TV apps on their devices;
- User-generated content is the most popular type of content viewed on smartphones, while scheduled TV movies and scheduled TV series are the most popular content types watched on the TV screen; and
- US respondents are most satisfied with traditional linear TV services’ video quality and least satisfied with these services’ price.
About the Data: The survey was fielded in the following countries: Brazil; Canada; China; Colombia; France; Germany; Greece; Ireland; Italy; Mexico; Portugal; Russia; Spain; South Korea; Sweden; Taiwan; Turkey; UK; Ukraine; and the US.