Netflix, HBO Bookend New Consumer Streaming App Study

With 22 million people in the U.S. reportedly dropping pay-TV service for over-the-top video in 2017, a new study found OTT video users quite fickle when it comes to their subscription video-on-demand experience.

In a study of five apps — Netflix, HBO Now, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu and YouTube TV — Netflix ranked the highest among 500 survey respondents, while HBO ranked the lowest, according to data from UserTesting Inc.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based research firm conducted the survey, March 1-15, asking respondents to rank the apps based on “ease-of-use,” “speed,” “credibility,” “aesthetics” and “delight.”

Not surprisingly, Netflix ranked the highest, scoring 89.5 (out of 100), followed by Hulu (86.8), Prime Video (85), YouTube TV (80.7) and HBO Now (71.8).

While most of the apps ranked close, HBO Now apparently disappointed respondents, who cited difficulty finding any recommended content, while also experiencing technical issues such as lagging, freezing and buffering.

Indeed, had it not been for a 97 score for aesthetics, HBO Now would have ranked even lower, according to the study. On the opposite end, Netflix provided the best customer experience.

Among all apps, only 29% of respondents said they watched recommended programming, with 50% of respondents saying they subscribe to at least two SVOD services to find programming.

Other notable findings include that just 11% of respondents stream video on their smartphone or portable media device. Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Kindle Firestick accounted for 45% of respondents preferred streaming media device, followed by the computer (37%).

“The rapid, widespread adoption of streaming entertainment has created a cultural shift in which 74% of participants in this study reported watching streaming media every day,” Janelle Estes, VP of strategic research services at UserTesting, said in a statement. “While data collection can help inform some features, there’s no substitute for capturing human insights to understand the evolving needs of consumers in the ‘what I want, when I want it’ era.”

 

 

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