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Freeview is set to launch a TV app that consolidates broadcaster VOD and live streams of channels from BBC, Channel 4 and ITV, into one place. As viewing of live TV among Gen Y declines, such an innovation could re-capture an audience broadcasters felt they had previously lost. We explore the insights behind how the TV provider is adapting to a new generation of on-the-go streamers.

As many of today’s most innovative brands can attest to, Gen Y and Z interact with products and services that adapt to their changing needs. That's why Freeview and Digital UK's plans to consolidate VOD and livestreams via one app could appeal to the cohort, as it will mean they don’t have to seek out live TV – instead it comes to them at the touch of a button. The app will launch in January 2019, giving users the opportunity to scroll through live TV and on-demand entertainment options to watch on their phones. "Today’s viewers value having access to their favourite shows when and where they want and the new app provides the aggregated experience that consumers increasingly expect from a TV provider," says Jonathan Thompson, CEO, Digital UK.

Freeview TV app re-frames the live TV experience for Gen Y Freeview TV app re-frames the live TV experience for Gen Y
Jed Vallejo (2018) ©

While the viewing of live TV has remained largely unaffected by subscription video on-demand (SVoD) for the majority of the UK, among Gen Y there's been a sharp decline in viewership. Live TV accounts for only 49% of the video consumed daily for 16- to 34 year-olds compared to the 71% average for all individuals, with nearly 50% f Gen Y and Gen Z watching on-demand content daily or more often. But as Gen Y turn to online video and personalised content for its greater flexibility they've missed out on the communal and social benefits that live TV brings. Feeling like you are part of something bigger drives a reassuring sense of connection, as the success of ITV's Love Island proves.

Canvas8 specialises in behavioral insights and consumer research.


14 Dec 18
2 min read

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