The World Cup temporarily brought live television back into living rooms, but on-demand TV remains the winner in the fight for viewers.
That’s the view of TV expert Dani Warner, from comparison website uSwitch.com.
“While the World Cup has certainly brought live TV to the forefront, viewers are increasingly choosing on-demand TV for the flexibility to watch what they want, when they want – all without having to wait a week between new episodes,” she said.
“It’s hard not to see the growing appeal of on-demand services like Netflix with packages starting at £7.99 a month – and no cancellation or setup fees – compared to rather more pricey, less flexible pay TV services.”
In the first three months of 2018, subscriptions to the top three online streaming services, NOW TV, Netflix and Amazon reached 15.4 million, whilst paid TV services totalled 15.1 million in the same period.
“On the face of it, this shift is being driven by the take-up of superfast broadband and the increasing affordability of the likes of connected devices, such as smart TVs and streaming sticks,” said Warner.
“Adding to this is the feeling that consumers don’t necessarily want to be chained to the broadcasting schedule.
“What is evidently clear is that content is still absolutely king. It’s no coincidence that the decreasing spend among PSBs on original programming correlates with a decline in the amount of time people are watching broadcast television live.
“Despite some shaky results on Monday, Netflix continues to put content first with Originals like Queer Eye, Black Mirror and The Crown making for compelling and diverse programming, as well as earning them more Emmy nominations than any television network in 2018.”