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Disney+ Could Disrupt UK Streaming Market

More churn, password sharing and illegal streaming: The UK video-on-demand (VOD) market could face major changes with the launch of Disney+.

Up to 7.6 million VOD users in the UK are already indicating that they want to sign up for Disney+ when it launches on March 24, 2020. However, more services will also result in increased user migration: UK VOD users subscribe to an average of only two streaming services and want to spend no more than around £17 (€20) per month on them. Exclusive content will become ever more important.

These are the results of a recent survey among 3,363 UK adults aged 16+, conducted via international video-on-demand analysis platform VOD-Ratings by German research and consulting group Goldmedia.

The announcement of the launch of the UK Disney+ service months ago has generated a lot of interest among VOD users. 59% of users have already heard about the launch of the new streaming service. The willingness to subscribe is high with around 35% of VOD users indicating they would use the service when it launches. This corresponds to a potential of 7.6 million users (including password sharing).

Most potential Disney+ customers want to subscribe to the service in addition to existing subscriptions (71%) and less than a third want to cancel another service for it (29%). However, Netflix would not be the most affected by user migration, as is often predicted. Only 2% of Netflix users are considering leaving the service for Disney+.

According to the survey, Sky’s Now TV and Amazon Prime Video are more likely to be affected with 9.7% of Now TV users and 7% of Prime Video users considering leaving these services in favour of Disney+. Considering this, the possible integration of Disney+ on the Sky Q platform, as has already happened with Netflix, appears to be a good countermeasure.

The key question for the future is how many streaming services viewers will subscribe to in parallel and what they are willing to pay per month. Most viewers in the UK currently do not want to subscribe to more than two services: for 70% two is the maximum number. On average, VOD users in the UK are prepared to pay £17 per month for video streaming.

With increased competition in the streaming market, around half of VOD users are willing to adapt their usage patterns accordingly. Many are willing to change their services more frequently – to whichever is currently providing the most exciting content. Content exclusivity plays an important role: for 16.2% of UK VOD users this would be a reason to switch service.

Password sharing is also likely to become even more relevant, as 15.8% of users want to make more frequent use of this option in future. 14.9% of users would be willing to subscribe to another service in order to be able to view their favourite content. Advertising-financed platforms will also continue to gain importance, with 9.2% of users increasingly switching to these types of services.

Illegal streaming is mentioned more frequently as an alternative, especially by young people. Overall, 8.5% of VOD users will revert to streaming illegally more often if the content they want to watch is not available on the services they have subscribed to. Broadband TV News

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