The number of Brits watching TV via their broadband connection soared last year, with online streaming services including Netflix, Amazon Prime and Now TV enjoying big rises in their subscriber numbers.
This is according to figures from the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB), which found Netflix is the most popular online streaming service in the UK, with more than two million new households signing up in 2018.
One possible reason for this identified by BARB was the inclusion of the service on Sky Q from November, which may have improved the visibility of the service and enabled more viewers to easily watch on their biggest screen.
Meanwhile, Amazon Prime also saw an increase of more than a million new subscribers, while Now TV added around 200,000 customers.
This means that overall, some 11.6 million households in the UK now subscribe to at least one video on demand service, while four million use two or more such offerings - a 40 per cent increase in the past year.
BARB's research suggested this demand is being driven mainly by younger viewers, with 16 to 24-year-olds 51 per cent more likely than the UK average to have access to a streaming service.
However, while Netflix is most popular in families with teenagers, those households with younger children favour Now TV, perhaps due to its relatively cheap dedicated Kids package.
The research also revealed when people are more likely to stay indoors and stream TV on demand, and its findings were unsurprising.
BARB said: "Christmas, the Beast from the East and Easter all produced increases in ... viewing. It’s clear that when viewers have more free time over holidays or during periods of bad weather, they use their televisions more."