Streaming Video on Demand’s growth trajectory continues globally

Apple TV+ attracts new subscribers; Disney+ explores FAST; Prime Video faces ad uncertainty.
02 May 2024
Streaming Video on Demand’s growth trajectory continues globally
andrew skerrat

Global Consumer Insight Director

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Kantar’s latest Entertainment on Demand (EoD) data and analysis on the global video streaming market highlights key trends within the video on demand (VoD) landscape as competition continues to intensify, with subscription stacking rising. For instance, Worldpanel’s data shows that AppleTV+ was the fastest growing major subscription video on-demand (SVoD) service in Q1’24, in terms of its % subscriber growth. In addition, Netflix had a strong Q1 in Europe and Australia, along with local services such as Movistar+ in Spain, Joyn Plus+ in Germany, and Kayo in Australia, all seeing elevated levels of new paid subscriber share. Furthermore, Prime Video’s introduction of an ad-supported tier was met with resistance from their existing user base.

Key insights within the VoD market from January to March 2024 include:

  • Apple TV+ was the fastest growing major SVoD service in terms of % subscriber growth.
  • Local streaming services, Movistar+ (Spain), Joyn Plus+ (Germany) and Kayo (Australia) all experienced a record share of new paid subscribers in their respective territories.
  • German households were most likely to switch one service for another, with 22% of new subscriptions being a direct replacement.
  • Netflix’s Net Promoter Score (NPS) rebounded to 18-month highs, at +42 (all markets).
  • After a strong Q4, Prime Video suffered a loss in users in Q1’24.
  • Reacher on Prime Video was the most enjoyed title in Q1’24 among all streamers, followed by Fool Me Once on Netflix, and Yellowstone.
  • Australian and German households showed heightened price sensitivity in Q1’24, with higher levels of cancellations attributed to ‘wanting to save money’.
  • VoD household penetration has increased across nearly all markets tracked from Q4’23 to Q1’24, with only GB marginally down.

Disney+ explores 'always on' programming

As ad-tier viewing models evolve, Disney+ are now exploring with 'always on' programming to enhance viewer engagement and combat cancellations due to infrequent use (1 in 3). Currently, 41% of Disney+ households engage with the service daily, a slight increase year-over-year. Free advertising supported streaming television (FAST) services, which offer scheduled streaming programming, is also growing. With 76% of households appreciating the option to have content continuously playing in the background, FAST services are now active in over one-third of households. As FAST services ramp up content investments, expect this growth trajectory to continue throughout 2024 and beyond.

Disney+ still trails behind competitors in terms of household penetration among the background viewing need-state, however they will be hoping these advances will change that. At present, only 20% of households with multiple VoD services choose Disney+ as their primary service and only 5% primarily use it to discover new content. Closing the differentiation gap with key competitors like Prime Video, already offering FAST programming via Freevee, could prove to be a lucrative move for Disney+ with their beloved franchise content, and new Disney originals sure to be popular.

Ad experience influencers subscriber choices

Over the past year, the VoD industry has seen significant shifts with new ad tiers and price increases being regularly introduced. Consumer acceptance of ads for lower prices has grown, with 49% of VoD households in favour, up from 44% last year. Despite this, the quality of ad experiences remains crucial.

Prime Video introduced ads in Q1 2024, offering an ad-free option for an additional fee. Despite Prime memberships being unaffected, this change led to a drop in Prime Videos user base. Prime Video have the highest level of subscribers displaying an active dissatisfaction with the number of ads being served, compared to other major services. In addition, the combination of recent price rises, and ads has also led to drop in net satisfaction with value for money among the Prime Video subscriber base, at 25% currently (vs 29% in Q4’23), however it must be noted, this does still outdo competitors.

In contrast, Netflix continues to excel, with strong retention rates and the highest subscriber advocacy levels in 18 months with an NPS of +42, indicating a solid and growing subscriber base.

A strong Q1 for local services

Streaming Video on Demand’s growth trajectory continues globally

Typically, Q1 starts with a slight pull back in penetration given the holiday period boom. However, Q1 2024 saw notable growth in local VoD services across various markets. Local services, Movistar+, Joyn Plus+, and Kayo recorded significant increases in their share of new paid subscribers.

Movistar+ attracted subscribers with its extensive sports coverage, quality of content, and variety of live streaming options. Joyn Plus+ converted many existing Joyn users to premium subscriptions, particularly through reality shows and sports, capturing 38% of new subscribers with specific content appeals. In Australia, Kayo’s growth was driven by its comprehensive sports content, notably AFL, NRL and the Formula 1, aided by hosting the Australian Grand Prix. Beyond this, effective TV advertising during the signup process. These trends underscore the importance of tailored content in driving subscriber growth for services, especially when households are continually seeking to optimise their VoD portfolio.

Andrew Skerratt, Global Insights Director at Kantar Worldpanel, comments on the findings, "The latest Q1 data emphasises the evolving nature of the global VoD landscape. AppleTV+ maintained its momentum from 2023 with strong subscriber growth, while Netflix shone in Europe, and local services like Movistar+, JoynPlus+, and Kayo showcased stellar performances in their respective markets. The trend towards ad-supported models remained prominent, though met with resistance from certain user bases, particularly on Prime Video. These developments, coupled with Disney+’s exploration of ‘always on’ programming, highlight this everchanging landscape. With household preferences shifting just as quickly, there is a critical need for services to adapt in order to both sustain and expand their subscriber base."

Access the interactive data visualisation tool for more information and contact our experts.

Note to editors: Unless stated otherwise, all data refers to the US, Australia, GB, Germany, Spain, and France.

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