Singaporeans spend an average of seven hours 37 minutes each week watching online videos, compared to just five hours 44 minutes of watching broadcast video content. That is according to a new “State of Online Video” research report from Limelight Networks, a leading provider of edge cloud services. The survey of consumers in nine countries including Singapore shows that while online videos have now overtaken traditional broadcast television in popularity, performance frustrations and cost concerns remain.
Binge-watching is on the rise worldwide, jumping 18 per cent from last year to an average of two hours, 40 minutes at a time. While Americans are the biggest binge-watchers with sessions averaging over three hours, Singaporeans follow closely behind with sessions averaging two hours and 35 minutes in one sitting. In addition to time spent, Singaporeans are also consuming more online video services. The report reveals 64 per cent of Singaporeans subscribe to at least one streaming service (compared to just 48 per cent in 2018) and nearly three in four Singaporeans (72 per cent) now use dedicated streaming devices (compared to 67 per cent in 2018).
Expectations for quality experiences are also increasing alongside the rise in online viewing. Although sports are one of the most popular online video content amongst Singaporeans, latency frustration remains a significant cause of concern for viewers and streaming providers alike. Traditional live online streaming events are generally delayed by 30 seconds or more from the broadcast feed, and more than half of Singaporeans (55 per cent) are more likely to watch live sports online if the stream was not delayed from the broadcast.
“Singaporeans enjoy live streaming global sporting events on their devices, but with the rise of social media usage, every second of delay can potentially ruin the game when online viewers learn about big plays from social media before seeing the action online,” said Edwin Koh, Director, Southeast Asia at Limelight Networks. “Especially in the upcoming 2019 Southeast Asian Games, the pressure is on for streaming providers to invest in video-enabled edge services that deliver seamless user experiences in real-time.”
Additional insights from the report include:
Price sensitivities are the deciding factor in video subscriptions. Rising prices are the number one reason Singaporeans will cancel their cable or satellite subscription (47 per cent) and streaming services (55 per cent).
Streaming advertisements should not disrupt the viewing experience. Singaporeans are most accepting of ads during an online video if they can skip it (65 per cent) or if it is a short ad before a free video (58 per cent).
Mobile phones are the preferred online streaming devices. Smartphones continue to dominate over computer and smart TV as the preferred device to watch online video. When it comes to streaming on the big screen, Singaporeans prefer to use smart TVs (48 per cent) over other dedicated streaming devices.