UK streaming growth slowing down as subscription fatigue hits home

The growth of streaming in the UK is slowing down, according to a study by consultancy outfit Simon-Kucher.

The company’s second annual Global Streaming Study found that only 38% of UK respondents indicate they stream more compared to last year, down 10 percentage points from the number of consumers who indicated their streaming habits were up year-over-year in 2022.

The study found that the average number of subscriptions per respondent in the UK is now two; down 10% from last year.

Streaming of both films and series has declined slightly in the UK. Seventy-one per cent of consumers spend more than two hours per week watching movies, a decline of seven percentage points), while 76% spend more than two hours per week watching TV series, down two percentage points.

Live events such as sport are significantly lower with only 37% of respondents spending more than two hours per week watching these (flat versus last year).

Price is the most important purchase criterion for consumers signing up for a subscription offering, followed by breadth of content available.

Seventeen per cent of consumers are finding it increasingly hard to manage the number of streaming subscriptions they have, while 22% cancelled an existing subscription within the last 12 months

For those UK consumers who did churn, the key reason cited was saving money. Fifty-two per cent indicated this was the reason for their decision.

“As the number of streaming subscriptions available to UK consumers continues to increase, the budgets of those consumers isn’t getting any larger and they’re actually becoming more price sensitive. Add to this the fact that a significant portion of subscribers are already overwhelmed with the amount of content they currently have access to, and providers will need to work hard to distinguish themselves in a saturated market” said Greg Harwood, partner at Simon-Kucher.


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