A new study by TiVo of video trends in North America has found an increase in cord-cutting and a strong demand for à la carte pay-TV services, with the ideal lineup consisting of just 19 channels.
The Q1 survey found that almost 85 percent of respondents have a pay-TV service. Of those who don’t, 21.8 percent had canceled in the last 12 months, a 4.4-percent gain on the first quarter of 2016. Price remains the leading factor for cord-cutting (80 percent), while 57.6 percent said they had cut the cord because they subscribed to an internet video service. Almost 27 percent, meanwhile, axed their pay-TV service because they like to binge watch. “These results further illustrate how disruptive over-the-top (OTT) streaming services are for the pay-TV industry,” TiVo reports. “Not only did OTT/SVOD subscribers increase by nearly 10 percent, binge-watching on streaming services spiked as well, illustrating the content is enticing.”
On the issue of churn, TiVo says that 7.2 percent of pay-TV subs plan to cut their service in the next six months, while 6.6 percent want to switch to another provider and 3.5 percent aim to switch to an online service. Some 32 percent were on the fence about switching. Of the 49 percent of respondents planning to or considering a cut, change or switch in pay-TV providers, 53.3 percent would consider staying if they could have an à la carte option. Many (34.3 percent) would also consider staying if all services—including Netflix, Hulu and Amazon—could be available in one place. Just over 27 percent, meanwhile, are firmly in the churn camp with plans to change or cut their pay-TV services.
The TiVo report also found that 41 percent of those surveyed pay for premium channels, with HBO, Showtime and The Movie Channel being the most popular.
More than 77 percent of those surveyed want to pay for just the channels they watch. The average price respondents would pay for an à la carte option is $25.73 a month, about $1.62 per channel. The top five channels wanted are ABC, Discovery, CBS, HISTORY and NBC. TiVo also found that 34 percent of subscribers are overwhelmed by the number of channels available and 83.5 percent watch 10 or few channels on their platform.
TiVo also studied viewing time and trends, finding that, on a daily basis, 85.4 percent of respondents watch live TV, 71.9 percent watch recorded shows and 67.8 percent watch titles on OTT. All three categories showed year-on-year increases.