Over 35s driving growth of Netflix, Amazon Prime Instant Video and BBC iPlayer

Growth in usage of subscription to video on demand (VOD) services like Netflix and Amazon Prime has been predominantly driven by the over 35s as the number of millennials signing up begins to tail off.

Nearly a third (30 per cent) of UK consumers use a VOD service each month, an increase of four per cent since the beginning of 2015.

The 45-54 age bracket is driving the lion’s share of growth, with subscriptions in this group up 15 per cent. Meanwhile, usage among 35 -44s is up seven percent while the over-55s has grown eight per cent.

However, usage among the 16-24s has dropped 12 per cent over the same period.

The findings comes from Decipher’s Mediabug Wave 6 bi-annual media consumption tracker which surveyed 3000 UK consumers.

The growth in on demand services has been further propelled by accessibility on TVs and set top boxes. Already on Virgin TiVo, Netflix also recently arrived on Youview boxes with around 40 per cent of Youview owners now using their box to stream VOD content at least once a month.

In addition Smart TVs, many of which have apps for both Netflix and Amazon Prime, have continued their strong growth with 29 per cent of broadband-enabled homes now having one.

Director of Decipher Media Research Dr Hamish McPharlin said: ‘In Wave 6 we’re seeing a subtle shift in tone when it comes to digital consumption. With over 35s getting on board with subscription VOD, we can see that it has moved past early adopter behaviour and is gaining mainstream acceptance, and this is driven by VOD becoming increasingly accessible on the most popular mainstream device: the TV”.

Both Netflix and Amazon Prime grew their subscriber bases over this period, with Netflix adding six per cent to its paid subscribers, and Amazon Prime adding three per cent.

However, BBC iPlayer has also performed strongly and now reaches more regular viewers through TV set top boxes than it does through the web and devices combined. Over a quarter (28 per cent) of UK consumers access iPlayer through the web, devices, and Smart TVs and a further 29 per cent access it through TV set top boxes.

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