The number of over-the-top (OTT) subscribers to video services will climb to 138 million by 2021, research has revealed.
A report from Digital TV Research shows that for 2016, North America will have 112 million subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) subs, up by 19 million on 2015. That total is for films and TV services only – not, say, sports streaming.
The report only expects 117 million TV households by 2021, meaning the SVOD total will represent 104% of TV households.
“It is important to stress that these SVOD figures are gross – some homes take more than one SVOD platform, especially in the US,” said Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research. “The average SVOD subscriber in the US will pay for about 1.5 services. From the 127 million US total in 2021, the report forecasts that 43 million will be secondary SVOD subscriptions. Putting it another way, there will be 84 million primary SVOD users in the US by 2021 – or 71% of TV households.”
The number of US Amazon Video subs will grow from 30 million in 2015 to 49 million by 2021, the report found. And, with Amazon Video is expected to start in Canada in 2017, it will have 51 million subscribers in North America by 2021, who will generate revenues of $2,486 million.
“Another important point is that our forecasts include Amazon Video – some other forecasts do not,” said Murray. “Amazon Prime subscribers do not directly pay for Amazon Video. However, to give as full a picture of the sector as possible, we calculate that 60% of Amazon Prime subscribers watch Amazon Video. For these homes, we have devoted half the Amazon Prime fee to Amazon Video.”
By way of comparison, Netflix is forecast to have 59 million paying SVOD subscribers in North America by 2021, up from 53 million at end-2016. The US will provide 52 million of the 2021 total. Netflix’s North American SVOD revenues will increase from $5,358 million in 2016 to $6,853 million in 2021.