From old time classics to latest release blockbusters, video streaming services have revolutionised the market and it seems it continues to be one to watch. Indeed, new research from Mintel reveals the video streaming subscription market in the UK is set to surpass £1 billion by 2019.

Whilst the video streaming market in the UK held a value of just £28 million in 2009, growth has been dramatic and Mintel estimates the market reached £437 million in 2014, up 56% from £281 million in 2013. What’s more, the rapid growth seen in recent years is set to continue. By 2019, Mintel expects revenue from video streaming subscriptions to total £1,171 million, which would see this sector account for 38% of the total UK video market (up from 20% in 2014).

Although the market for music streaming subscriptions is worth little more than a third of the size of its video equivalent, the industry has also recorded substantial growth in sales value in recent years. The value of music streaming subscriptions has amplified by 65% to reach an estimated £175 million in 2014 and over the next five years Mintel forecasts the market could almost treble in size, with subscription revenue expected to reach £461 million by 2019.

Paul Davies, Senior Leisure and Technology Analyst at Mintel said:

“Streaming services give people the ability to access a huge mix of content, including everything from classics to current material. As more consumers acquire connected devices such as smart TVs, which allow them to stream films and TV programmes directly, more people will pick digital sources over physical formats such as DVDs and Blu-rays. Within the music industry, the big challenge for providers is to better monetise their user base by encouraging as many people to become subscribers as possible, with consumers three times as likely to use free streaming services rather than pay for access.”

Showing the strong foothold streaming has additionally in the British music scene, Mintel’s research finds that half (50%) of consumers have streamed music in the last 12 months. However only a quarter (24%) of music streamers have paid for access, with most opting for free services that use advertising as a means of revenue. Whilst participation in music streaming tails off among older consumers, young Brits aged 16-24 are the demographic who are the most likely to use either free or paid-for streaming sites or applications (77%).

“Within the music sector, the incentive to upgrade users to paid services is not just about increased revenues but also about easing tensions with artists.”

Moreover, whilst over two-thirds (69%) of Brits have streamed online videos in the last 12 months, a third (32%) of this group have paid for a video streaming service. Overall, usage of online streaming services again peaks at younger Brits, with a vast 91% of 16-24s accessing a video streaming service in the past 12 months.

“Video streaming services have enjoyed more success than music services when it comes to converting people into paid users. However, while video subscriptions are often seen as offering good value, the market faces increased competition from pay-TV services that continue to reach more and more homes. Within the music sector, the incentive to upgrade users to paid services is not just about increased revenues but also about easing tensions with artists.” Paul continues.

Furthermore, it seems there is additional opportunity in the future for streaming services to combine media as Mintel’s research also shows 41% of online music subscribers and 33% of online video subscribers would be interested in a subscription package that included a bundle of different media services.

“Cross-usage between music and video streaming services is high and the potential for packages that bring together such services is clear to see. Dynamic bundles that allow users to pick and choose the media services they take on a rolling month-by-month basis would offer better value and deliver better integration.” Paul continues.

Finally, when deciding what to watch, Mintel’s research reveals that UK consumers like to explore content libraries themselves in order to find new music or video online, with 50% of users saying that they would rather do this than receive recommendations from providers. As many as one in four (39%) consumers who have streamed music or video say they often find that content recommendations from services do not fit their interests. Meanwhile, almost one in three (31%) users of music and or video streaming services would like to see content recommendations from their friends appear on sites.

Press review copies of the report and interviews with Senior Leisure and Technology Analyst, Paul Davies, are available on request from the press office.

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