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Will the introduction of ad-supported subscriptions help streaming services to prevail through the cost of living crisis?

New research from Bitmovin reveals over half (57%) of Americans have NOT canceled any streaming services despite the cost of living crisis

Denver – Colorado, October 26th, 2022 Bitmovin, an industry-leading streaming infrastructure provider, has unveiled new research revealing that over half (57%) of Americans have NOT canceled any streaming service despite the cost of living crisis. Value for money (54%) and the availability of their favorite content (48%) are what will keep consumers subscribed to video streaming services amidst the cost of living crisis. The research also found that almost one in four (25%) Americans valued the ability to use a streaming service across all devices as one of the top three reasons to keep a subscription.

Bitmovin’s research suggests that in a paid subscription model, the majority (68%, rising to 78% in those aged 18-35) are happy to pay that little bit extra for an ad-free experience. Most viewers (58%) are happy to tolerate ads when it comes to free streaming services, however, it seems if paying for a subscription, no matter the cost, they would like ad-free content.

Interestingly, Americans are also keen to prioritize their fitness and education, seeming  unlikely to cancel fitness platforms (13%) and eLearning platforms (10%) if they were forced to due to the cost of living crisis. 

Stefan Lederer, CEO, and Founder at Bitmovin commented, Netflix’s announcement may agitate some users, however it is clear they are taking steps to help consumers through the cost-of-living crisis. The cheaper, ad-supported membership, may open the platform up to a net-new audience, but at the same time, our research indicates loyal viewers are happy to pay that little bit extra. For Netflix, it’s the best of both worlds.”


What stands out from the research is that amid global economic challenges, consumers are looking for value for money in all aspects of their lives and video streaming services are not exempt. High-quality viewing experiences and the ability to stream seamlessly are consumer requirements now. And this is the case, across not just all devices, but also across a range of subscription types, from entertainment to fitness to education and more. These factors are fundamental when considering a streaming service’s value for money, with pure content no longer the be-all and end-all for subscribers.“

Americans are still spending six hours per week watching paid-for entertainment streaming services and just three hours on free entertainment platforms on average. Interestingly, mobile phones are the second most popular choice for viewing streamed content (49%), behind Connected TVs (67%) – much higher than tablets (23%) and laptops (25%).

Stefan Lederer, CEO, and Founder at Bitmovin, concluded, “There’s still a huge demand for video streaming platforms. Streaming platforms that want to remain ahead of their competitors need to closely examine their service as a whole and ensure it delivers the best value for money – by providing the best online experience, cost-effective bundle options, and high-quality content. This is the new battleground for the streaming wars.”

About Research:

The research was conducted by an external research agency to distribute the survey, collect data and provide results from 2000 respondents across the US.

About Bitmovin

Bitmovin is a leading provider of video infrastructure for global digital media companies and service providers. The company has been at the forefront of industry innovation and all major developments in the digital video streaming industry.  

Bitmovin built the world’s first commercial adaptive streaming player and deployed the first software-defined encoding service that runs on any cloud platform. Its cloud-native technology offers the most flexible and scalable media encoding, playback, and analytics solutions available with unparalleled device reach, ease of integration, and world class customer support. 

Bitmovin customers benefit from optimized operations, reduced time-to-market, and the best viewer experience possible. Bitmovin is headquartered in San Francisco, California and has major offices in Vienna, Klagenfurt, Austria as well as London, Berlin and Denver. The company has over 400 customers across the globe including ClassPass, BBC, fuboTV, Hulu, and Discovery. For more information, visit  

Press Contacts 

Zoe Mumba, Global PR and Communications Manager

[email protected] 

WithPR on behalf of Bitmovin 

[email protected]

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