Reality bites for SVOD | VOD | News | Rapid TV News
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While already a staple for linear services, reality programming is slowly beginning to gain traction within video on-demand (VOD) services says research from Ampere Analysis.
Ampere reality 8April2020The study focussed on commissions, renewals and cancellations in 2019 found that reality was the second-most commissioned genre for linear services and third-most commissioned genre for video on-demand (VOD) services.

As a key indicator of the growth of the genre in the VOD word, Ampere noted that hat service indicates that Netflix has ramped up production of reality content compared with previous years. While in January 2018 Netflix had four original reality TV shows available, by the end of 2019 this number had grown eightfold to 32 original titles, with dating show Love Is Blind among its top-performing shows in the first quarter of 2020.

The research also found that in both the UK and the US, the most commissioned genre in 2019 was documentary, with one-off commissions a frequent occurrence and the genre overall representing 31% of all first-run series ordered in 2019. Reality was the second most commissioned and renewed genre accounting for 14% of all commissions in 2019 with in total 337 reality shows were commissioned in the two countries. While comedy followed as both the third most commissioned and renewed genre, almost a quarter (23%) of shows were yet to begin series production, reflecting the longer production period required for scripted series. First-run commissions accounted for 67% of all series announced in 2019.

Looking at the differences between linear and VOD, Ampere discovered that renewals in 2019 were skewed towards linear commissions, with series of the latter category series representing 85% of all UK and US renewals in 2019. High-profile unscripted linear renewals included 19th and 20th season order for MTV’s UK reality series Geordie Shore, and a 17th season order for NBC’s music competition show The Voice.

Nearly two-thirds 65% of linear renewals were unscripted series, in comparison with just 25% of all VOD renewals, with streamers preferring to focus on higher-budget, scripted fare. Reality was found to relatively safe from cancellation on both linear and VOD platforms accounting for only 8% of all cancellations.

“While reality has been a staple for linear TV due to lower per-hour production costs and continued popularity among consumers, VOD services have been increasingly investing in the genre,” commented Ampere Analysis analyst Olivia Deane. “With Netflix already commissioning two more seasons of top performing title, Love is Blind, Reality looks like it will be the next battleground for linear and VOD services.”