Study: Spanish-Speaking Subs More Likely to Pay for TV

Bilingual Spanish-language households with broadband access are more likely than other U.S. households to have pay TV and over-the-top video service subscriptions, according to a just-released study from Dallas-based market research and consulting firm Parks Associates.

The study 360 View Update: Pay TV and the Spanish-Language Household analyzes a survey of U.S. broadband households where Spanish is spoken daily. Among the key findings: Some 89% of these households have a pay TV subscription and more than 75% subscribe to at least one OTT video service. Among average U.S. broadband households, 84% subscribe to pay TV and roughly two-thirds subscribe to an OTT service.

“While pay TV penetration has declined among U.S. broadband households, adoption has remained steady among Spanish-preferred and bilingual households over the past few years,” Brett Sappington, Parks Associates senior director of research, said. “Cord-cutting does not have the same impact in Spanish-language households as it does for the larger broadband population. In fact, most of their recent pay TV changes have been upgrades to more expensive services.”

Meanwhile, Spanish-language pay TV households that identify themselves as bilingual are more likely than other U.S. households to have purchased pay TV upgrades within the past 12 months, according to the Parks study. One key driver for this group of Hispanic pay TV consumers is the appeal of premium movie channels, with 58% of this group noting their appeal. Some 41% of respondents in this group noted that they are subscribing to these offerings because the content is not available via OTT services, Parks said.

“At one time, many operators required that consumers subscribe to a base package of primarily English-language channels in order to purchase a bundle of Spanish-language channels,” Sappington said. “Today, Spanish-language services are evolving to better meet the needs of the consumers who demand them. New services are emerging that cater to this segment, including services such as Sling Latino and Univision Now.”

West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Olympusat is the latest to respond to this growing demand, and has collaborated with Philadelphia-based streaming video service FlixFling in delivering “Spanish-language premium video” to the latter’s users. The VOD content deal with FlixFling will enable consumers to subscribe to the following channels:

Cine Real, a contemporary movie channel offering Spanish-language titles from Latin America and Spain, including popular genres such as action, drama, comedies and romance;

Damas, a Spanish-language entertainment channel featuring lifestyle programming for Hispanic women and both current and classic telenovelas;

Pio Pio, developed entirely for preschoolers, this channel includes educational, values-oriented and entertaining Spanish-language content;

Parables, a faith-based English-language entertainment channel featuring movies, series, documentaries, children's programming and original productions that inspire one story at a time;

Parables en Español, which offers a combination of inspirational movies, series, documentaries and original productions in a faith-based family entertainment environment;

• and TOKU, an English-dubbed channel delivering the most popular and sought after live-action fiction titles, anime, and cult classics from Japan, China, South Korea and Thailand.

Cine Real, Damas and Pio Pio will be available for FlixFling subscribers by the fourth quarter. Parables, Parables en Español and Toku are set to launch in early 2017.

“We are thrilled to partner with FlixFling as we continue to greatly expand our digital footprint in the U.S. and Latin America,” Tom Mohler, CEO of Olympusat, said in a statement. “We are proud to offer a huge influx of top-rated new releases to their customers while making our brands available to a wider audience, and giving them the content they want.”

FlixFling is a unique hybrid service offering movies and television, to rent or buy on demand, as well as multiple monthly subscription channel offerings. Subscription packages for each of Olympusat's channels will be available for monthly prices ranging from $3.99 to $4.99 per channel, the company said.

“We are very excited to further diversify the content we offer to our customers and appeal to the Spanish-speaking market. Olympusat has an impressive content lineup that we are sure will appeal to a broad audience,” FlixFling CEO Thomas Ashley said.