Friday, April 8, 2022

Too many streaming services

A study by a group called Interpret says that one in five streaming subscribers think they subscribe to too many services. The main focus of the report is actually talking about something we touched on this week: aggregation of content.

We touched on OneFlix and Plex promoting aggregation with new apps or updates to apps. In that article, I thought that the Plex offering is better for streamers, because it's available on streaming devices, while OneFlix is limited to mobile devices, at least for now.

Well, this study by Interpret says that one in three streamers want better aggregation.

Among subscribers to streaming services, fully one-third express an interest in being able to manage and search for their available content from one place. Consumers want aggregation services to help remove pain points from the subscription process. They also expect bundled offerings to deliver greater value, as well as to improve account management, discovery, and content recommendation functionality.

And while I understand that, and how that would be the focus because anyone that can do that can get more eyeballs, and more ad revenue. But the thing that is of interest to me is that one in five think they are already spending too much money on too many streaming services.

Interpret’s study, The Future of OTT Aggregation, reveals that US viewers subscribe to an average of 4-5 SVOD services, and the majority also access multiple ad-supported or ad-funded on-demand services. That’s a lot of content to navigate and manage, and over 20% of US consumers agree that they “subscribe to too many video streaming services.”

I think that simply means that 20% realize it, and that up to 80% are doing it but not yet realizing it. I truly think most people can do better with how they subscribe to services.

And this isn't new. There have been studies in past years about the same thing, with similar results.

For a while, I've said streamers need to question if they really need a live streaming service, and if they really want one, if they are getting the best value for their money.

Now, to be sure, a number of streamers are getting exactly what they want, whether they spend a little, like me, or if they spend a lot, like I used to. I'm fully aware that what works for me doesn't mean it works for someone else. But the study does show that a good number think they spend too much.

If you want to spend less, check and see if that live streaming service is really providing you the content you want. Can you get the same or similar content cheaper?

And these smaller on-demand packages? Apple TV+, Disney+, HBO Max -- all the Plus and Max services -- may have what you want, but do you really need to subscribe all year to all services? Can you skip around? Can you get by subscribing to just one this month, and another one next month, and a still different one the following month, and so on? I have settled on doing it that way, and still get to watch what I want, but pay a fraction of what others pay for the same services. I just don't have them all at the same time.

If you have too many streaming services, you are not alone. More people think they have too many, and if you can find a way to save some money, that's a very good thing. I enjoy my Streaming Life better knowing I'm saving money. And you can too.

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