SPB TV Survey 2015

SPB TV, one of the world’s leading providers of end-to-end OTT TV solutions, believes that for a TV service to be success it is vital to closely watch your viewers. Every year SPB TV conducts online surveys among the end-users of its OTT TV and video services (including joint projects). We learn how to shape the user experience and build TV businesses by investigating the demands, interests and concerns of our viewers.

In 2015, SPB TV surveyed a sample of 60,000 respondents out of its 45 million-user base. The survey was conducted in six languages: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian and Turkish, and mainly targeted emerging markets. The majority of respondents were based in Albani, Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Brazil, Egypt, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russian Federation, Sudan, Turkey, Ukraine, and the United States.

Let them watch - everywhere

  • TV channels are still most often watched on TV-sets, followed by smartphones. For movies and series on-demand, PCs are the screen of choice. Short videos are widely consumed on smartphones followed by PCs. Live popular events, like sport competitions and concerts, are best watched on large TV screens.
  • OTT TV and video viewers are primarily interested in finding desired content and accessing it in the most convenient way. This includes downloading video from the web.
  • However, in searching for online streamed content people tend to turn to the TV and video services that they already know, rather than use search engines.

Big Screens

  • TV is the most often cited device for watching nearly all types of TV programming genres included in the survey, as well as for enjoying live events.
  • 42% of respondents engage with OTT TV and video services on Smart TVs, 37% -– on TVs connected via TV-boxes. These groups intersect – 39% of those respondents who have Smart TVs also use some additional devices to expand the functionality of their TV-sets.
  • Targeting Smart TV audience includes planning your multiscreen outreach. Generally, Smart TV owners have several other media-enabled devices in their possession and use them for consuming video.
  • TV-boxes are usually provided by TV operators rather than chosen by the end-users. In choosing a TV-box independently, people most often purchase Google Chromecast and Apple TV devices, or use game consoles to access live and video content.
  • While selecting a TV-box of any type, people mostly pay attention to the content that they will receive through it, including TV channels, video on demand and YouTube. As for the technological capabilities, media-box owners pay attention to the availability of browser, games and VoIP services.
  • TV-box owners are mainly satisfied with the devices they use. However, Apple TV has the highest satisfaction rate and operators’ boxes – the lowest.

TV on the go

  • Since last year, the frequency of mobile devices’ usage skyrocketed, with 44% of respondents saying they watch TV or video every day on their smartphones and 25% - on their tablets.
  • TV on the go is especially popular among the youth – 81% of respondents under 30 access TV or video on mobile every day.
  • Mobile viewing is mainly driven by user generated content (UGC), with 55% watching YouTube videos every day on their smartphones, and 37% - on their tablets. However, smartphones are also second-best for linear TV viewing - after TV-sets; while tablets are often used for watching movies and series on-demand.

Must-have features

  • Content is the king; that’s a rule for any TV service regardless of the protocol. However, there is also a list of must-have features that OTT users expect to be provided free of charge or included in the basic subscription. The top-rated features are user-friendly and well-designed interface; an integrated TV-guide; 5.1 hi-res audio; personal account; service’s availability on PC, mobile, and Smart TVs with time-shifting and place-shifting support.
  • HD and ultra-HD video quality is seen as a premium feature; the majority of respondents are eager to pay for it.
  • Traditionally people don't rank highly social features, like social networks integration and content reviews, and those innovations that they most likely haven’t tried yet, like Smart Home integration and multiple profiles in family account.

Live TV – Popular as Ever

  • In modern dynamic life, watching live TV works well for offering some quality relaxation breaks and clearing one’s mind. People watch TV channels while having breakfast/lunch/dinner and right before going to sleep. TV also makes the hours spent in waiting or during routine jobs much more pleasurable. And of course TV by itself is a great entertainment activity that people conduct on their own, as well as with their families, children and friends.
  • Only 10% of respondents answered that they never watch TV, but only video on demand.
  • TV channels are most often watched on TV-sets with smartphones being the second most often mentioned viewing device.
  • Speaking of overall TV shows' popularity, the most often cited genres are TV series and movies (via linear broadcast), closely followed by news. Further down come comedy shows, discovery shows, music videos, documentaries, and sports. Children’s shows and cartoons, culinary shows and reality shows are not so often mentioned among the regularly watched TV shows.

Add flexibility with multiple business models

  • The OTT TV viewers have been developing their culture of consumption; they wish to receive a quality service fitting their needs and life styles, and they are ready to pay for that. The amount of respondents who ‘wouldn’t pay for TV or video services in any case’ decreased from 27% in 2013 to only 19% in 2015.
  • To subscribe, OTT viewers require that they have all their content needs covered and not be disturbed by the ads. 
  • Debit/credit cards were most frequently cited as ‘the most suitable payment method’; other payment methods lost by a wide margin.
  • The advertising model, as well as a hybrid advertising and subscription model, can be successfully applied in the regions with traditionally high level of piracy. The level of tolerance to commercial-supported services among those respondents who don’t want to subscribe is 72%.
  • People actually have started seeing more value in ads. To further increase the efficiency of advertisements 74% of respondents proposed letting the viewer choose the ads relevant to him or her. It once again proves that ads can and should be interesting, and that truly accurate targeting is the key to success.