Our research shows more than half of young people plan to ditch TV licence

More and more, people are going online to get their TV and video content. We see it in Pure Telecom every day as it's driving an increase in broadband consumption. So we wanted to find out just how much online content people are watching and if it's affecting their desire to own a TV.

Our research found that 55% of Irish TV license holders aged 30 and under are planning on, or considering, ceasing payment of their TV license due to an increase in consumption of online content and streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. The research carried out by Censuswide, surveyed 1,001 online adults across Ireland in July 2017.

Our survey highlights how traditional TV viewing habits are changing, as increasing numbers are choosing to go solely online to watch TV and on-demand content. Currently, any household with a TV set is required to pay the 160 license fee, however, the charge does not apply to those who view all their video content via laptops, tablets, or smartphones.

In total, 43% of Irish TV license holders are planning to, or considering, ditching their TV license solely due to an increase in online viewing. One-in-10 Irish adults have already stopped paying the TV license, rising to 17% in the 30 and under age group.

The research also found that the average consumer spends 6 hours 36 minutes watching streamed or online content each week. This trend is even more pronounced with younger audiences, with those aged 30 and under consuming 8 hours 47 minutes of online video per week. We found that people living in Donegal are the heaviest consumers of streamed and online content, watching 10 hours 18 minutes each week. That is followed by those living in Meath (9 hours 13 minutes) and Galway (7 hours 53 minutes). Those living in Cavan spend the least time on streaming sites, watching only 3 hours 12 minutes per week.

Commenting on the findings, Paul Connell, CEO, Pure Telecom, said: The quality of content produced for online platforms has been steadily rising to the point where it is now at least on par with and in many cases, it outshines what is offered on traditional television channels. People also now take for granted the convenience of on-demand viewing and the ability to watch content on-the-go. Coupled with very high-quality content now available online, it is natural that consumers are questioning the need to continue to pay for a TV license.

The results come as no surprise to us at Pure Telecom and solidify our commitment to providing the lower cost, fast and reliable home broadband service that is essential to delivering high-quality viewing experiences for our customers. As people become increasingly reliant on internet-driven content, we are ensuring we will be there to provide the best service for everyone's broadband needs.

Earlier in the year the Department of Communications considered an extension of the TV license fee, which would apply to owners of computers, laptops, and large tablets a suggestion that has since been scrapped. Our survey highlighted that there is little appetite for the charge amongst Irish adults, with 62% opposed to its introduction...