Streamers Aren’t Digital Buyers

Pride of ownership is not a familiar concept for many streaming video service subscribers.

In a new study, market research firm GfK found that videophiles are far less likely to purchase or rent digital copies of films and TV shows than own a physical copy.

Less than half of those surveyed – 46% – report ever having bought or rented a digital-only copy of a TV show or movie, compared with 86% who have paid at least once to own or rent a DVD or Blu-ray disc, and 78% a VHS tape.

Among ‘digital-nevers,’ the term used for those who have never paid for an individual digital title, 70% have bought or rented a DVD or Blu-ray disc, and 68% a VHS tape.

At least two thirds of digital-nevers cited the availability of an SVOD service as a key reason for not purchasing digital copies. Consumers also worried about difficulty of use, inability to access their content across all devices, and the need for an online connection to view their digital titles.

“Our research clearly shows that most digital-nevers have histories of renting or buying TV programs and movies in physical media,” said David Tice, SVP of Media and Entertainment and director of The Home Technology Monitor, which is owned by GfK. “But the desire to seek out and purchase content so purposefully seems to have given way in a digital world to a subscription mindset.”

To learn more about GfK’s report, Physical versus Digital Video: A Tale of Three Media, visit GfK.

About Larry Greenberg

A former local beat reporter and film critic, co-founder Lawrence Greenberg has more than 25 years’ experience as a writer and public relations executive.

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