New Mediabug report shows that SVOD is not cannibalising the UK Pay TV base

160504 hamishBy Hamish McPharlin

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New research from Decipher has shown that Pay TV subscriptions have not only increased since 2012, but SVOD subscriptions are growing faster amongst Pay homes – and in particular those with Top Tier packages – than any other.

Findings

Decipher’s latest Mediabug report has thrown up the intriguing possibility that the arrival of SVOD services in the market may have actually helped, not hindered, the Pay TV market. The bi-annual analysis of 3,000 UK consumers tracks adoption and use of SVOD in both Pay TV and Free TV homes. This latest report shows that the total Pay TV base has continued to grow from 61% to 69% of the UK population over the last four years (FIGURE 1). During this time, SVOD usage in Pay TV homes has grown from 10% to 45%. This indicates than there is a growing cohort of UK consumers that are increasingly comfortable with both Pay TV and SVOD.

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Its Time To ‘Disintermediate’ Newspapers

Sept 2011 - New NW BW crop for social mediaBy Nigel Walley

I love newspapers and am probably an ‘over-consumer’ of both free and paid content.  I believe and value good journalism, and I pay online subscriptions for 3 daily newspapers and 3 monthly ones. I read them all on my iPad and desktop PC, jumping between the two depending on circumstances.  However, my purchasing behaviour is erratic and during the recent US presidential election I realised that I could easily be persuaded to pay for more if it wasn’t for some basic retail hurdles.

As I was following coverage of the election I found I was regularly following links to articles from US journals on Twitter. I often used up my weekly allowance of free articles on US sites like the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and the New Yorker and came to quite like the idea of subscribing to them.  On each of them I frequently hit the page where they wanted me to sign-up and the sums involved were small, but I didn’t.  The overwhelming reason was I just couldn’t be bothered with yet another online relationship to manage. more “Its Time To ‘Disintermediate’ Newspapers”

‘Truthiness’ In TV

Truthiness is a quality characterizing a “truth” that a person making an argument or assertion claims to know intuitively “from the gut” or because it “feels right” without regard to evidence, logic, intellectual examination, or facts. As defined by  Stephen Colbert – the Colbert Report

 

Speaking at a conference last week, I quoted an OFCOM figure about the resilience of linear broadcast viewing in UK television. After my talk I was accused of lying about it by an audience member.   It was a strangely shocking moment because the person in question seemed completely unmoved by the proof that it was a recent OFCOM number and not a personal insight.  They resorted to the standard old humbug of ‘well I don’t watch any live TV anymore’.  They were convinced that they truth they felt in their gut was more true than an exhaustively researched OFCOM number.

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Media Agency Innovation and the ‘Labs’ Conundrum

Sept 2011 - New NW BW crop for social mediaBy Nigel Walley

Last week I was struck (but not surprised) by the news that Ogilvy have decided to shut their ‘media innovation’ function – Ogilvy Labs.  I have run the only commercially independent media lab – iBurbia Studios – for the last 10 years and understood some of the pain they had gone through.  However, seeing the articles in the press from their labs team protesting about ‘lack of investment in innovation within agencies’ struck a chord. But probably not in a way they would like.

iBurbia Studios was a spin out from the media innovation consultancy Decipher, that I have run since 1998.  Older readers will remember that Decipher itself was first conceived as a ‘change agency’ within Interpublic Group creative agency Lowe Howard Spink.  iBurbia was first conceived in the old Lowe’s HQ at Bowater House.  So I know a little bit about running media innovation labs in agencies. more “Media Agency Innovation and the ‘Labs’ Conundrum”

Breaking Out of The Box

Sept 2011 - New NW BW Head & Shoulders (thumbnail)

By Nigel Walley – @nwalley

This post first appeared as an article in the RTS Magazine ‘Television’ in July 2016

The humble set top box – or STB – has come a long way since it was first introduced over 20 years ago.  Originally just a device intended to decode broadcast signals, many in our industry dismiss the discussion of the STB as a ‘tech’ issue.  However, the STB has emerged as one of the most important device classes in the consumer media landscape and once again is driving disruption and strategic change.

In the early years, viewers used content from pay boxes as a complement to their ‘normal’ TV viewing, just turning on the box when they wanted to access their pay channels. But over time set top boxes morphed a number of times into a new and much more influential driver of change in our industry.  more “Breaking Out of The Box”

Out of home comes into focus

By Matthew Walters – @matthew_walters – matt.walters@decipher.co.uk

Head and shoulders

Sunday morning began a few weekends ago like any other, with newspapers sprawled over the dining table and a pot of freshly brewed coffee to hand.  On the living room radio, John Lennon – his mock playful vocals ranging over the backing of a lilting acoustic guitar – lamented that “the more I see, the less I know for sure”.  I remembered this line this week when thinking of a newly introduced feature on one of our smallest, yet one of our most interesting, free-to-air platforms that has recently been withdrawn.  Closer inspection revealed that Recordings to Go, as it was called – launched in late March by EE TV as a way for its customers to transfer PVR recordings to a mobile or tablet device, to ultimately be watched outside of the home and without the need for a broadband connection – was quietly removed last month, following (in the words of EE) “discussions with content rightsholders”.  This was made all the more notable by the fact that, just weeks earlier, Sky Q – the new “pay premium” service from Sky – launched with a similar (though crucially not identical) feature that remains in tact and in operation at the time of writing.  Though this would appear to be the tale of two platforms and a type of functionality that has coined the most mechanical of industry jargon (“sideloading”), and could generously be described in these early days as little known and little used (though growing in popularity), this episode in fact cuts much deeper and wider – and points to further potential pinch points in relations between broadcasters, rightsholders and platforms in the months and years ahead. more “Out of home comes into focus”

Streaming Devices Like Amazon Fire Are Now Driving OTT Use On The Big Screens In UK Television Homes

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Decipher have released the latest wave of their bi-annual Mediabug research into consumer media use. Now in its fifth year, the bi-annual report is based on an online consumer survey of 3000 UK consumers, and reports on how new technology is impacting media consumption.

 

Findings

For the first time, this Mediabug Wave has shown the impact of new low-cost streaming devices like Amazon Fire Stick, Roku and Google Chromecast in driving OTT VOD use onto the big screen in UK television homes.

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A smarter version of Now: Sky and the new “squeezed middle” of free-to-air

By Matthew Walters – @matthew_walters matt.walters@decipher.co.uk

Head and shoulders“This is something we’re really excited about,” Jeremy Darroch said – perhaps revealingly – at Sky’s Q2 2015/16 results presentation last month.  “There’ll be no switching between inputs or sources, and it means this will become the gateway to our customers’ pay and free-to-air viewing.”  Amidst discussions of “Fluid Viewing”, in-home streaming and “pay premium” price points, these comments were some of the few that didn’t relate to the new Sky Q.  Yet these few words could yet have a more far-reaching and longer-term significance than anything said in the fluorescent-tinged fervour of the last three months as we’ve waited for the latest version of the Sky pay TV platform to come to market. more “A smarter version of Now: Sky and the new “squeezed middle” of free-to-air”

Chasing Sparrows In Marathi

We hear so many horror stories of fraud, malware and deceit on the internet that it can sometimes be easy to lose sight of the overwhelming global good the internet has delivered. Sometimes this is a huge good, but most often it is the cumulative impact of lots of little ‘moments of goodness’. We want to share a small unimportant story that makes this case.

In 2016 Decipher will be launching a spin-out tech company based on some IP we have developed in-house. We recently went through the increasingly difficult process of deciding what to call the new company.  As most dot.com start-ups will tell you, in an increasingly globalised world there just aren’t many that words left that you can buy the rights for in all the relevant ways. more “Chasing Sparrows In Marathi”