Monday, 10 October 2011

Talking Point: do you stream TV more than movies?

Monday, 10 October 2011
Netflix have revealed that 60% of their US subscribers prefer to stream TV shows instead of movies. Does this fit with your own online habits? I've only ever streamed a few movies online, and because the quality was sub-DVD standard (with no surround sound), my choices were always old "classics" I'd never ordinarily bother to buy or rent. There's no way I'd stream a recent movie I've never seen before, over just getting my hands on a proper DVD/Blu-ray with its assurance of audio-visual quality.

But TV? Well, I think most people inclined to stream aren't so demanding about the quality of a TV show over a movie, and it certainly requires less commitment because TV episodes aren't usually more than an hour long. I daresay many people are sat at their computers desks or laptops/tablets when streaming media, and that can get uncomfortable after awhile. I bet the most popular TV shows are half-hour comedies, too. Quick hits people can get to fill some time online, basically. (From personal experience, I watched a few Robot Chicken's on a whim one evening, as it was available on streaming.)

What do you think? Are you surprised Netflix are having more success with television streaming, or does that concur with your own experience? Do you think things will change once HD-streaming is more common? Or will it change when more people can easily stream media onto their TV sets, and feel they have sufficient home comfort to consider watching a two-hour movie?