Netflix and Amazon Prime Video subscribers could see advertising-supported programming in the future.
That’s the conclusion of a new study by market research firm GfK of 2,311 American consumers ages 13-64, including 1,007 regular users of major streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and YouTube.
The study, Comparing Streaming Services 2016, suggests that Netflix and Amazon Prime customers, who now pay $9.99 and $10.99 respectively for those monthly subscription plans, believe the services are already fairly priced and might not be willing to absorb significantly higher monthly charges. This fact, GfK said, coupled with rising production costs for original series and movies, could leave these services with no alternative but to introduce advertising. Services such as Hulu and YouTube already include advertising.
“(T)he investment required for these flagship shows may need to be offset by new revenue streams in order to meet investor expectations,” said David Tice, SVP of GfK’s Media and Entertainment team. “Hulu and other ad-supported services have offered ‘ad-free’ subscriptions as a premium option; conversely, Netflix and Amazon Prime may need to introduce ‘ad-inclusive’ subscriptions to hold the line on monthly subscription costs for their price-sensitive customer segments.”
The study did find that desire for “original and/or exclusive content” did not rank high among the reasons people pay for monthly streaming services, although it did find a noteworthy rise in subscriber interest in “original series/movies.”
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