Streaming movies and shows over the Internet has become a norm in Singapore, with the highest viewership among millennials or those aged 15 to 34.
This is according to an inaugural survey conducted by the Media Development Authority (MDA) to track the population’s viewing habits with the increasing availability of over-the-top (OTT) video services such as Netflix, Apple iTunes and YouTube.
The authority interviewed face-to-face 2,585 Singaporeans and permanent residents up to age 65 late last year.
About 90 per cent of those aged 15 to 34 used online streaming services, although the national average was just over 50 per cent.
Younger viewers spent a greater proportion of their viewing time online than on traditional TV.
For instance, children up to age 14 spent about two-thirds of their weekly viewing time on OTT services, with the rest on traditional TV.
In comparison, OTT services dominated about 60 per cent of millennials’ weekly viewing time, and 48 per cent for those aged 35 to 54.
The most popular OTT services were YouTube and social networks such as Facebook. But about 20 per cent of the respondents also said they accessed content on piracy websites.
Only 11 per cent of OTT viewers were paying for their content. Those who did not pay cited the availability of free content online as the key reason.
Asked if they would consider paying for online videos, more than three-quarters said they would not.