UK SVOD growth slows after Disney+-driven lockdown surge | Ratings/Measurement | News | Rapid TV News
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After a surge of three million sign-ups in the three months to April, which covered the early Covid-19 lockdown period, new subscription video-on-demand customer numbers have fallen back to a more normal level, hitting 826,000 in the second quarter of 2020 according to research from Kantar.
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The Q2 2020 results from the company’s Entertainment On Demand service — based on a longitudinal panel of 15,000 consumers and boosted by 2,500 new subscriber interviews each quarter — found that since hitting peaks thanks to a surge in Disney+ take up when it launched in March 2020, the SVOD surge has started to level off as Prime Video dominates new subscriber share. And in a clean sweep for Netflix, Ozark, Money Heist and Tiger King were most enjoyed SVOD programmes across the country in the quarter.

Specifically, the study revealed that in the three months to 30 June 2020 Amazon Prime Video led in new sign ups securing a 45% share over the quarter, with performance particularly strong amongst first-time SVOD subscribers, driven up by free trial promotions. Q2 20 saw a big increase in advocacy amongst Prime Video subscribers with Outlander, Little Fires Everywhere, Bosch and Star Trek Picard the key titles driving this performance.

Just under a quarter (22%) of new subscriptions were for Disney+, a fall from the 52% it achieved in its UK launch quarter. That said Disney+ saw a steep rise in lighter users, reflective said Kantar of many UK schools returning back during the second quarter. Netflix and NOW TV rounded out the top four for new sign ups with 11.7% and 5% respectively.

The largest contributor to new SVOD subscribers in the quarter were Gateway subscribers, those taking out an SVOD subscription for the first time, contrasting with the first quarter, where stacked subscribers, those taking incremental SVOD subscriptions, were the single largest group. Overall subscription stacking was found to be edging down as consumers started to show signs of dropping multiple platforms, as Netflix planned cancellation rate continues to fall, hitting just 2.2%.

Looking at the SVOD leader, Netflix continued to dominate in customer advocacy, with a Net Promoter Score of +46, and the study noted that it was no surprise that it dominates the most enjoyed content list. Of particular interest said Kantar was that Money Heist, came in #2 despite being subtitled, highlighting and appetite for foreign language content.

To Dominic Sunnebo, senior vice president at Kantar, Worldpanel Division it was no surprise that Q220 didn’t see a repeat of the huge SVOD subscriber boost seen in the first quarter. “[Q1] had the highly unusual combination of Disney+ launching and the UK in lockdown for the majority of the period. Amazon Prime took the highest share of new subscribers in the quarter, with the increase in overall online shopping as a result of Covid-19 measures, likely helping to make Prime membership, and it’s free delivery system, a more attractive proposition to British consumers,” he remarked. “Whilst most platforms have seen usage fall slightly in the second quarter, as life in the UK edges back to normality, Disney+ in particular has seen a notable increase in lighter users, as schools begin to return back.”