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British consumers prefer streaming to pay-TV

Roku’s The Streaming Decade report shows that British viewers are evolving away from pay-TV to streaming content, creating new advertising opportunities for content providers

American streamer Roku has released the results of its study of UK consumer TV viewing behaviour and preferences, which suggest that the UK has evolved into a nation of streamers.

The Streaming Decade report was conducted by National Research Group on behalf of Roku, and finds that TV streaming has reached a tipping point, with nine in ten survey respondents saying they are TV streamers versus only seven in ten who use traditional pay-TV services such as Sky, BT and Virgin Media. This is reflected across age groups, with 77 per cent of 57-70-year-olds now classed as ‘streamers’, and 31 per cent had added more services in the past year.

The research established that streaming enables premium content opportunities for viewers, and in turn offers a valuable commercial opportunity for content providers. Half of those surveyed say they have ad-supported services, while 21 per cent of ad-funded video-on-demand (AVoD) users are “cord-shavers” who have downgraded their pay-TV services in the last 12 months. Four in five AVoD viewers use another device while streaming, which also creates cross-screen advertising prospects.

“The findings highlighted in our The Streaming Decade report show that TV in the UK has reached a tipping point, and streaming is becoming the norm for all ages,” said Mirjam Laux, VP international at Roku. “With more and more new and interesting content available to consumers, streaming has become the dominant force for consumers. And where consumers go opportunities follow for brands to engage them with compelling, best-in-class advertising that’s relevant to their interests. Streaming is clearly the future of TV.”