What consumers want from streaming services

By Michelle Wroan

Just ahead of last month’s Apple TV+ and Disney+ launches, KPMG completed a study on U.S. consumer preferences when selecting video streaming services. The quantitative data, based on our survey of more than 2,000 current subscribers age 18-60, provided great insight into the factors consumers consider most important in making their streaming choices.

Equally revealing were the more than 1,500 responses to the open-ended question: “if you could change one thing about your favorite streaming service, what would it be?” 

The responses illuminated the following key themes:

The majority of answers focused on content mix, but covered a wide range of preferences including a desire for: more choices, better quality content, older shows, newer shows, deeper libraries of movies and TV shows, more original content, less original content, interest in specific genres, etc.

Movies were a significant area of focus
, with a greater desire for newer releases, better quality movies, and a broader selection on streaming services.

A large number of respondents cited price as an issue, with a preference for lower prices and more free services.

Advertising was a major theme among the 18-24 age group. Comments centered heavily on getting rid of ads entirely, or reducing the number of ads. The 25-60 age group expressed similar sentiments, however, it was a much smaller percentage of respondents.

People also focused on ease of finding content, noting a desire for better search options, more intuitive user interface(s) and more accurate recommendation engines.

There were also a number of comments expressing a desire for a consolidated streaming environment accessible through a single app or entry point.

More than a few respondents also expressed interest in sports options, live streaming, and a greater ability to download and view content offline, even if only for a limited period of time.

The seven themes together point to a fragmented video streaming market on the cusp of a significant inflection or pivotal transition as additional major players join the competition.

It will be some time before we know which providers maintain or build a dominant position, as the enthusiastic anticipation of the new entrants gives way to the reality of executing against the technical, price and content demands of the consumer. This presents a great opportunity for successful providers and great risk for those who fall short.

To speak with Michelle about the media industry, please contact Mike Alva, mobile (925) 878-5488, malva@kpmg.com; Twitter - @michaelalva.


KPMG research


How consumers choose video streaming services
Content, price, and ads are top of mind for consumers in KPMG's survey on video steaming.

Michelle Wroan

Michelle Wroan

Office Managing Partner, Los Angeles, KPMG US

+1 213-955-8657

Media contact

Mike Alva

Mike Alva

Director, Corporate Communications, KPMG US

+1 925 878-5488