Commentary

Consumers Share Log-Ins For OTT Services, Slice Into Revenue

The over-the-top devil is in the details.

While OTT services are rapidly rising in use, so is consumers’ savvy in piggybacking onto their friends’ and family’s OTT subscriptions. More than 57% of all broadband homes use over the-top video subscription services, but the sharing of such services is also on the rise, to the tune of 11% of homes exclusively using a buddy’s account for OTT viewing, said Parks Associates in just-released research.

When it comes to sharing, picture the college graduate who accesses HBO Go by logging in with his parent’s account, and so on. This reliance on someone else’s log-in represents lost revenue for content providers. More than one-third of SVOD content consumed each week is via over-the top, but it only accounts for 9% of the household video expenditure, Parks Associates said in its report.

In younger households, the practice is even more common, and 22% of consumers 18 to 24 who watch OTT are using someone else’s subscription.

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Here is how the sharing breaks down by OTT service: about 11% of Netflix subscribers, 10% of Hulu Plus subscribers, and 5% of Amazon Prime Instant Video subscribers use an account that someone else pays for, Parks said. Bear in mind that most OTT services allow some simultaneous streaming, but usually within the same household.

Consumer Reportssaid in January that 46% of subscribers share their account log-in with those outside of the home.

The jury is still out on whether account sharing will pose a significant problem to OTT revenue. However, by all accounts SVOD will continue to grow. Juniper Research said that the number of subscribers to OTT services like Netflix and Amazon will rise globally, from 92.1 million in 2014 to more than 332 million by 2019.

4 comments about "Consumers Share Log-Ins For OTT Services, Slice Into Revenue".
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  1. Leonard Zachary from T___n__, May 28, 2015 at 4:39 p.m.

    If I buy something I should be able to share it. What gives?

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, May 28, 2015 at 5:16 p.m.

    Neflix is a rental, not ownership. No doubt very soon, there will be a limit to how many registered vehicles can use the rental. Change your phone, change the registration, for example.

  3. Leonard Zachary from T___n__, May 29, 2015 at 1:07 p.m.

    Paula the refrence was to a family's cable subscription and further, the mobile OTT service. What's wronmg with sharing a Netflix account? If I rent an apartment and further, take roomates to sahre the cost, what gives????

  4. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, May 29, 2015 at 9:06 p.m.

    A landlord can restrict the number of people living in the unit. Some cities/townships have a square foot amount per person living in a house/unit so that there are not 5 families living in a 3 bedroom house. A car rental can limit the number of drivers or you pay more. Rentals can have restrictions. Buy the DVD and lend it out to as many people as you wish. Don't be surprised when it happens.

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