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TV Everywhere vs. SVoD

Online video access is increasingly important to consumers, but even as subscription online video services gain market share, TV Everywhere services run by pay TV operators are still significantly less in demand than their linear TV counterparts, and OTT competitors.

In Q1 2018, when consumers were asked which online services they had used in the past month, TV Everywhere services were significantly less popular than SVoD services.  Across 13 markets, only 28% of pay TV subscribers on average used a TV Everywhere service provisioned by their operator (typically included free with their TV subscription).  By contrast, 66% of pay TV subscribers used a third party SVoD service.

Reasons for the apparent preference for SVoD over TV Everywhere services include:

  • TV Everywhere services are typically used to watch content that a consumer may have missed, not recorded or be in a position to watch via their set-top box. Lower usage consequently partly reflects the fact that consumers only need to use TV Everywhere services when they are away from their main TV set.
  • In addition, the nature of TV Everywhere services' programming is still different to SVoD. While services like Sky are increasingly expanding their box-set content libraries, many TV Everywhere services still focus on catch-up or replay activity. Catch-up episodes typically have a short (7-30 day) window in which they are available to watch on TV Everywhere services. Furthermore, compared to the typically advertising-light SVoD market, TV Everywhere programming often reflects its broadcast origins, containing (sometimes unskippable) adverts.

If TV Everywhere services are to grow their viewing share relative to SVoD platforms, larger box set libraries need to be available for long-term viewing. Binge-viewing is now mainstream, and this is one of the attractions of SVoD over many TV Everywhere services. On average across the markets surveyed by Ampere through its Consumer polling, over half of consumers frequently watch several episodes of the same TV show back-to-back. It is this viewing activity that many TV Everywhere services are not fully addressing. However, considering consumers only need to use TV Everywhere services under certain circumstances, usage rates are likely to remain lower than that of SVoD services.