ruralNew market research suggests rural OTT usage is lower than the national average, maybe significantly so. A key finding of the research, commissioned by Innovative Systems, is that 82% of rural households subscribe to pay-TV, which is in-line with national averages, but just 34% of rural households regularly stream OTT content.

According to a 2016 Consumer Reports study, 47% of U.S households regularly use streaming OTT services (we’re talking usage as opposed to subscription or penetration rates). By that measure, this research suggests that rural OTT streaming usage is 38% less than the national average.

Innovative Systems’ Video and Internet Research Study also found that only 4% of rural homes have entirely cut the cord for OTT usage exclusively. The research suggests that rural demographics play a large part in these rural OTT usage metrics.

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“Rural demographics are much different with an older average age, fewer children in the home, and less access to broadcast channels by antennae,” reports Innovative Systems in a press release announcing the research findings.

Other key findings of the research include:

  • Sixty‐seven percent (67%) of video subscribers contacted their provider within the past year – 28% of them to reduce their bills.
  • Sixteen percent (16%) of video subscribers would move to a cloud‐based DVR service, if it were available to them.
  • Local channels remain critically important with 87% of customers absolutely demanding them – up 2% from last year.
  • Off air channels are scarce in these markets: 51% of homes can only get 1‐5 channels; and 28% of homes can only get up to 10 channels.

Image courtesy of flickr user Tom Gill.

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2 thoughts on “Report: Rural OTT Usage Lower than the National Average

  1. the lack of penetration of ott has nothing to do with the lower bandwidth and connectivity issues making ott a less than pleasant experience in the rural environment, its a bunch of old geezers with empty nests clinging to outmoded technology. Stereotyping doesn't effect our perspectives does it?

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