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Downloading Becoming Key Feature for Mobile Viewers

(Image credit: Panthera)


Downloading video content is becoming an important feature to mobile users of streaming services, a new report said. 

According to the “TV In Your Pocket” mobile video downloading report from nScreenMedia and VideoNuze, working with video technology company Penthera, 59% of U.S. streaming service users expected services to allow them to download videos.

Those who use downloads are doing it 132% more than in 2018, the report said.

New streaming services Disney+ and Apple TV+ not only support video downloading, but actively promote it a key feature, the report said. Hulu recently started letting subscribers download some of its content. Downloading is also offered by Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, CBS All Access and Showtime. 

Overall of the 80 top video service providers studied for the report, 28 offer mobile video downloading.

“Savvy video service providers have therefore concluded that enabling viewers to download video to their mobile devices for offline viewing is necessary,” the report said. 

Downloading is especially important to mobile users because they need flexibility to be able to watch regardless of location. 

“Challenges in mobile connectivity continue to make delivering out-of-home viewing experiences a challenge,” the report said. “For users not on an unlimited mobile data plan, watching video can eat up a lot of their monthly data allotment. Viewing high-quality video on wireless networks can also fail for a variety of reasons. For example, a wireless carrier may not have enough cell capacity, or handoffs between cell towers may be interrupted while a user is in fast-moving cars or trains.”

Penthera found that 54% of U.S. streaming service users said they would be more likely to subscribe to a service that offers a download option and that 67% would pay a premium for the capability.

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.