While in Europe IPTV offers are generating record revenues, the French have turned away from piracy in favor of legal offers. This is in any case what emerges from a study by the Regulatory Authority for Audiovisual and Digital Communication (Arcom) published on Friday 16 December.
According to Arcom, 86% of French Internet users aged 15 and over have consumed at least one dematerialized cultural good among the twelve types of content listed (music, films, series, documentaries, video games, photos, software, books, press, live sport, podcasts, live shows) i.e. 45 million people.
“Films (54% of Internet users), music (50%) and TV series (49%) remain the top three of the most consumed cultural goods” specifies the Arcom. The least popular content is podcasts (17%), books and audio books (14%) and live shows (7%) such as comedians, for example, very present on the Amazon Prime platform.
The French are adopting paid services
More significantly, the Arcom study indicates that 73% of French Internet users have at least one paid subscription. On the other hand, it does not specify the share of accounts specific to each household or used thanks to the codes of another person.
Although music streaming services have been democratized for longer, it’s good subscription to a video streaming offer which is prioritized by the French. 66% of Internet users have at least one subscription compared to 36% for music and 33% for a TV package.
This trend results in an increase in the average basket which now reaches 21 euros per month on average, counting users of free accounts (32 euros excluding these profiles).
Piracy down, except among young people
The Arcom study also devotes a section to the consumption of dematerialized content via illegal services (streaming, downloading, etc.). The rise of platforms and their adoption have slightly slowed down this practice.
According to figures from Arcom, 24% of Internet users still consume content illegally. This still represents a quarter of the population, but the trend is down (-4%) “for more than half of the goods” studied, including films, series and sporting events.
If piracy is declining, it is mainly thanks to older Internet users. The 40 and over bracket was the most attracted by the legal offers. 65% of them consume their content via legal platforms. The youngest (15-24 years old) are only 12% to have used the legal offer in 2022.
According to the president of Arcom Roch-Olivier Maistre, this change in habits can be explained in two ways. First, the fight against piracy has accelerated with, in particular, the blocking of reference sites, both for the streaming of films and series and for the streaming of sporting events.
Mostly, “the development of the legal offer” makes access to content more accessible. Even if the services are multiplying, some distributors offer complete packages allowing you to make great savings. Competition between different platforms also drives prices down.
This study does not take into account the offers with advertisements launched at the very end of 2022. If Disney is limited to the United States for the moment, the offer Essential with advertising from Netflix is present in France at an attractive price.
The arrival of new players such as Paramount+ (with fanfare) or Universal+ (more discreet) expands an already comprehensive offer. The excuse of the unavailability of a legal offer for certain content therefore holds less and less.