TV and OTT subscriptions almost equal: study

Plus, Amazon Prime and Sportsnet Now are making waves.

Canadians have fallen for over-the-top (OTT) streaming, according to the latest Media Technology Monitor (MTM) report – but that doesn’t mean they’re over traditional TV.

According to the report, 65% of Anglophone households subscribe to an OTT service such as CraveTV, Amazon Prime Video, Sportsnet Now and Netflix, up from only 12% in 2011 when Netflix first launched in Canada.

However, OTT subscribers are also still invested in traditional TV, according to the report, which states that approximately four in five either have paid TV subscriptions or watch over-the-air broadcasts. 68% of over-the-top TV subscribers are also traditional TV subscribers and 75% are non-OTT subscribers.

While only one in five say they consume TV exclusively online, viewership has seen a steady growth since 2008, when only 22% of Anglophone adults were tuning into online TV at all. Today, 67% are watching TV online, a trend MTM reports being in step with OTT service subscriptions, which steadily grew from 12% in 2011 to 39% in 2014, 58% in 2017 and 65% in 2018.

In terms of OTT, Netflix is still the leader of the pack with 60% of Anglophone households subscribing to the service versus the 12% that subscribe to Amazon Prime – which doubled its viewership since fall 2017 – 9% subscribing to CraveTV (up from 8% from last fall) and 8% subscribing to Sportsnet Now, which almost tripled its viewership since fall 2017 when it only had 3% viewership among Anglophones.

Among the OTT services, Amazon Prime tends to draw in a younger, more affluent audience (23% make $150,000 or more), according to the report. Nearly half (42%) of its viewership is in the 18 to 24 demo versus 35% on Netflix, 31% on CraveTV and 20% on Sportsnet Now. Sportsnet Now has the largest audience of people older than 65, at 18%. Sportsnet Now subscribers also watch the most TV on a TV set overall (13.6%).

Results from the report, which looks at overall demographics, penetration, overlap between services and general TV consumption, were drawn from a spring survey of 2,000 Anglophones.