Lower-Priced, Ad-Supported Tiers Drew 32% Of SVODs' Total Sign-Ups In 2021

Consumer sign-ups for the lower-cost ad-supported tiers of five major premium subscription-based video-on demand (SVOD) services totaled 42.2 million in 2021, according to Antenna data.

That includes Discovery+, HBO Max, Hulu, Paramount+ and Peacock’s reduced-cost tier (not its free tier). Antenna tracked 10 major premium SVODs in 2021, but only five had reduced-price ad-supported tiers.

In 2020, sign-ups for such tiers totaled 19.4 million — although the 117% increase by year-end 2021 in part reflects the addition of Paramount+, which launched in March 2021. (CBS All Access was tracked before and after it was relaunched as Paramount+ in January 2021.)

The ad-supported tiers accounted for 32% of total premium SVOD sign-ups in 2021, versus just 19% in 2020, according to the measurement and analytics company’s Year in Streaming 2021 report.  



The jump in ad-supported sign-ups translated to a three-point increase in share of total premium SVOD subscriptions for services with ad-supported plan tiers, to 22% in 2021 from 19% in 2020.

The ad-supported tiers numbers do not include free tiers, multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs), telco distributors or select bundles.

The other five premium SVODs tracked by Antenna are Netflix, Disney+, Apple TV+, Showtime and Starz.

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