The number of people subscribing to at least one video service in Great Britain has fallen by 1.51 million.
A new report from market research firm Kantar found more than half a million of the losses could be attributed to families trying to cut costs amid rising retail prices. It means at the end of the first quarter of 2022, approximately 58% of Britons – not including Northern Ireland – were subscribing to streaming services including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+.
Younger households have been particularly hit by the cost-of-living crisis leading to the penetration of streaming services dropping to 74.6% at the end of March 2022, compared to Q4 2021’s high water mark of 75.8%.
Subscriptions had increased dramatically during the Covid-19 lockdown as families were forced to find entertainment at home – helped by several new launches.
A mere 3% of UK households signed up to a new video streaming product in the first quarter compared to 4.2% during the same period in 2021. Fifty-eight percent of households (16.9 million) now have at least one paid subscription, down 215,000 quarter-on-quarter.
The proportion of consumers planning to cancel SVOD services and stating the primary reason as ‘wanting to save money’ has risen to its highest ever level at 38%, up from 29% in Q4 2021.
Kantar’s Worldpanel Division global insight director, Dominic Sunnebo, described the research as “sobering”.
“The evidence from these findings suggests that British households are now proactively looking for ways to save, and the SVOD market is already seeing the effects of this,” he said.
“As a result, it’s now more critical than ever that SVOD providers demonstrate to consumers how their services are indispensable in the home in what has become a heavily competitive market.”
The report also reveals Amazon Prime thriller Reacher was the most-streamed show between January and March 2022, Netflix dramas Ozark and Inventing Anna on Netflix.