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This year, 51.5% of internet users in the UK — about 29.25 million people — will use a subscription over-the-top (OTT) video service like Netflix at least once per month, according to a new eMarketer forecast. That figure is up more than 10 percentage points since 2018, when the share of subscription OTT video users in the UK was 40.8% of internet users.
According to eMarketer forecasting director Shelleen Shum, the continued growth in users is due to more competition entering the market this year and more UK-focused content being created by SVOD services.
New subscription OTT video entrants will provide consumers with more options. New-to-market services could drive more users to adopt a subscription OTT service for the first time. Apple TV+ launched in the UK in November, and Disney+ is expected to launch on March 24.
And a localized version of HBO Max will likely arrive in Europe sometime in 2021, according to WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey. BritBox, the British drama-focused SVOD from the BBC and ITV, also launched in the UK for the first time in November, but we don’t expect it to meaningfully add to overall subscription OTT users in the UK given that much of the content can already be watched on the BBC and ITV’s own free on-demand platforms, BBC iPlayer and ITV Hub.
All that said, there could be relatively high resistance to paying for OTT video services in the UK compared with the US, given that that free, ad-supported OTT video services like BBC iPlayer are available to all UK consumers who pay the annual license fee to own a television. To that end, the share of internet users in the UK who use a subscription OTT service (51.5%) is far lower than in the US (66.5%) in 2020, per eMarketer.
Existing subscription OTT video offerings like Netflix are catering more directly to local viewers. Subscription OTT services that already operate in the UK are investing more in local fare: For example, Netflix spent £400m ($500 million) producing local-market content in the UK in 2019.
That money went toward the production of over 50 TV and film …read more
Source:: Business Insider