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Subscription streaming cuts illegal video downloads in Australia

Staff writer ▼ | October 7, 2015
Subscriptions to streaming TV and movie services have quickly become popular in Australia, with Netflix in particular adding hosts of new subscribers this year.
TV and movie   Fall of illegal downloads in Australia
According to July 2015 polling, subscriptions to streaming services mean cutting back on illegal downloads for many users, eMarketer reports.

Research by Choice found that while 25% of internet users in Australia who subscribe to a streaming TV or movie service say they still pirate the same amount of video content as before they subscribed—and 7% download even more illegally than before—a plurality are cutting back on the habit.

One in three said they downloaded video content illegally “much less often,” and an additional 12% had decreased illegal downloads at least somewhat.

That adds up to a strong plurality of 45% of streaming subscribers downloading less illegal TV and movie content than before.

Internet users who reported ever downloading illegally—whether they also subscribed to legal services or not—said their biggest reason for doing so was cost: 38% thought legal content was too expensive.

But timeliness (32%) and convenience (26%) were also major factors, along with availability (23%). Subscription services could be helping to alleviate some of these problems by making legal content more easily and rapidly available.

On the other hand, 21% said they just did not want to subscribe to a whole service so they could download some content.

In line with earlier research noting the success of Netflix in Australia, respondents to the Choice survey were more likely to say they used Netflix (38%) than domestic Foxtel or Austar (37%).