Streaming Key for Nearly a Third of Internet Users

New research from financial services company Raymond James shows that almost a third (31 percent) of Internet users polled in November cited streaming services such as Netflix or Hulu as their primary source of video content, up from 24 percent a year ago and just four percent behind the 35 percent of survey respondents who named cable as their primary source of video entertainment.

The investment company believes consumers are not eliminating cable subscriptions as much as “cord-shaving,” or creating so-called skinny bundles offering fewer channels at a reduced price. The top reasons given for retaining cable were access to broadcast TV channels, sports, and premium channels.

As for the boom in streaming popularity, three-quarters (76 percent) of those surveyed named Netflix as one of the services they would subscribe to if forced to choose just three due to budget constraints.

Raymond James said Netflix’s strategy of creating original content, including the hit shows Stranger Things and Orange is the New Black, appears to be working, noting that the company plans to spend $8 billion on content in 2018 with hopes of increase the share of original content to around half. RBC Capital Markets found in a survey conducted in November that 58 percent of Netflix subscribers said original content influenced their decision to sign up.

The Raymond James 2017 Media Survey revealed other interesting statistics: 70 percent of survey respondents reported using Netflix, up from 59 percent a year ago, with 47 percent using Amazon Prime, up from 41 percent in 2016. Hulu also experienced year-over-year growth with 28 percent of respondents saying they use the TV-centered service, up from 20 percent a year ago.

The survey also revealed that the three streaming services tend to be paired together, with 92 percent of Hulu subscribers and 80 percent of Amazon subscribers also subscribing to Netflix. Many of those surveyed also continue to pay for traditional cable television, suggesting that consumers are creating personalized bundles of content.

Information for this report was culled from reports from Advanced Television and DigitalNewsDaily.