FAST streaming platforms -- Free Ad-Supported Television -- are making major gains, partly due to their ability to facilitate content discovery for viewers.
According to a study by music video network Vevo and media agency group Publicis Media, 49% of consumers found FAST services because they said “it came already on my TV/I found it on my TV.”
Analysts of the study say “friction to getting FASTs on TV is incredibly low. About half of viewers first learned of the services because it was preloaded.”
By contrast, only 21% found a paid video-on-demand streaming service with no ads that way.
In terms of specific content discovery for a TV show or movie, the study says nearly 60% of those who are tuning in to a FAST service say they “browse or scroll until I come across something.” Analysts of the study say that on FAST, viewers “can stumble upon something with little effort.”
The rise of FAST networks has given rise to the theory that viewers are watching a mix of different type of services. The study says 75% of streaming content that is watched comes from both ad-supported and ad-free services.
Only 7% are watching content totally “ad-free.” On the flip side, the research also says only 18% are watching totally "ad-supported" content.
The study also found that viewers use on average 6.3 TV streaming services per month. And that despite some criticism 84% don’t “feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of options.”
Research also shows nearly 49% watch 1.2 FAST services per month, while 78% watch an average of 2.6 ad-free services a month and 53% watch 1.0 subscription/limited-advertising-supported services per month.