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EU broadband users prefer traditional video

Over 20% of broadband households in Western Europe have watched a film or TV programme online in the past six months, according to research firm Parks Associates. In all the countries surveyed – the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, and France – over 80% of broadband households prefer a more traditional option for viewing video, including going to the cinema or watching a DVD. Many consumers are watching video online only because of the availability of free content, both legitimate and illegitimate, the research firm added.

"It will be difficult for companies to sell video streams and downloads to consumers in Europe when there is this undercurrent of reluctance," said John Barrett, director of research, Parks Associates. "Even if all piracy issues are resolved, the realities of consumer preferences could still undermine the service plans of content providers, if they don’t understand their customers."

However, the popularity of Web videos does continue to grow globally, and in December, YouTube, with its mix of amateur and professional videos, attracted more than 40%of views in the U.S. Its competitors each attracted less than 5%., which distributes reruns of TV shows and movies and is a joint venture of News Corp and NBC Universal, received 1.7% of video viewership. And another survey of online video viewers by research firm Magid Advisors, 70% of respondents said they were unfamiliar with made-for-the-Web shows from TV and movie producers.

Story filed 23.02.09

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