Buffering and low-quality video with services like Netflix and Stan leads to immediate physical and emotional reactions, new research says.
A study from Sensum and commisioned by cloud delivery platform Akami found viewers disengage with emotive storylines and react negatively to low-quality streaming incidents like buffering, regardless of the brand or interest in the content.
The research of 1200 people used facial coding and skin conductance and found when buffering occurs happiness drops 14 perc ent, while negative emotions (disgust and sadness) increase by an average of 8 per cent. Attention drops by 3 percent and focus decreases by 8 percent.
“This unique research shows there is no place for low-quality video in any streaming business model,” said Ian Munford, Akamai’s director of product marketing, media solutions.
“The premium online video market is extremely competitive; the battle for revenue share is intense and subscriber acquisition costs are increasing, making differentiators like quality of experience more important than ever.
“Service providers cannot take risks with streaming experiences that are compromised by low resolution or buffering. They must provide consistent, high-quality experiences to help retain subscribers and reduce acquisition costs.”
In related news, local content quotas could be on the cards for Netflix and other streaming services.
As News Corp reported yesterday the Department of Communications and the Arts, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and Screen Australia are conducting a review which hopes to develop reasonable local content quotas for streaming services.
“Over the past decade, fundamental changes have taken place in the media landscape, defined by the entry of new online services offering catch up TV, streaming, subscription video on demand and user generated video,” the Department of Communications wrote.
“While industry changes provide new opportunities for Australia’s world class screen practitioners to deliver their work to new audiences here and internationally, they have also challenged existing business models.
“In this rapidly changing environment, it is necessary to review our support and regulatory measures to ensure they remain fit for purpose in the digital era.”
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