Online movies luring viewers away from primetime TV

Oct 26, 2011
Services allowing North Americans to watch movies and television shows over the Internet is luring droves of viewers away from primetime television, a report showed Wednesday.

Services allowing North Americans to watch movies and television shows over the Internet is luring droves of viewers away from primetime television, a report showed Wednesday.

Waterloo, Ontario-based Sandvine said such online streaming has risen dramatically over the past year to become the top in North America during the peak period of 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

What it calls real-time entertainment now accounts for 60 percent of all Internet traffic in the evening, up 10 percentage points from last year, according to the data it has aggregated from network service providers.

The majority of real-time entertainment (55 percent) is destined for game consoles, set-top boxes, smart TVs and mobile devices used at home, while only 45 percent goes to desktop and , according to the report.

The trend risks creating problems in handling data surges during peak periods for networks, Sandvine warned.

Canadian Internet service providers have been cautioned against bandwidth throttling -- limiting uploads -- as this violates Canadian guidelines.

So Sandvine suggested they start charging premiums for primetime downloads.

The report explained that game consoles such as Sony's Playstation and Microsoft XBox are powering this online movie watching phenomenon, through manufacturers partnering with content producers.

Microsoft, for instance, announced this month a massive expansion of content providers for its , including heavyweights Bravo, Comcast, HBO, BBC, Telefonica and Rogers on Demand.

Also, "when subscribers watching online video are free to choose between screens, they generally choose to watch content on the largest screen available to them," the report noted.

A TV offers a better viewing experience than a computer, but a larger screen size also means higher data usage. For example, when watching a video on a 60-inch high definition plasma screen, most subscribers will opt for the highest video fidelity available.

According to Sandvine's report, the most popular real-time entertainment sites include Netflix, YouTube, Hulu and Google Video.

Explore further: Apple, Samsung lose ground in cooling tablet market

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Netflix video 'king' of US Internet traffic: study

May 17, 2011

Films and television shows streamed online by Netflix amount to nearly 30 percent of the content racing downstream on the US Internet during peak periods, according to a study released Tuesday.

Microsoft brings TV content to the Xbox

Oct 05, 2011

(AP) -- Owners of the Xbox 360 will soon be able to watch a broad breadth of TV shows and other content through their gaming consoles - though most of that won't be free.

Annoyed consumers have alternatives to Netflix

Sep 28, 2011

If you're ticked off at Netflix because of its recent price increases and service changes, the good news is you've got plenty of options for streaming video. The bad news is that none offers exactly what you get from Netflix.

Recommended for you

Nokia profits rise after sale of handset division

9 hours ago

(AP)—Telecommunications and wireless equipment maker Nokia Corp. saw its shares surge on Thursday after it reported higher profits and an improved earnings outlook in the wake of its sale to Microsoft of its troubled handset ...

Swiss drug maker Roche posts 7 percent profit drop

12 hours ago

(AP)—Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG on Thursday posted a net profit drop of 7 percent compared with a year ago, weighed down by a strong Swiss franc and charges from one of its diagnostic units.

Cheaper wireless plans cut into AT&T 2Q profit

23 hours ago

(AP)—AT&T Inc. on Wednesday posted lower net income for the latest quarter due to cheaper cellphone plans it introduced as a response to aggressive pricing from smaller competitor T-Mobile US.

Facebook 2Q earnings, revenue soar (Update)

23 hours ago

(AP)—Facebook is on a roll. The world's largest online social network posted sharply higher earnings on Wednesday as revenue from mobile advertising continued to grow, and more people used it, more often.

User comments : 0