Users 'won't pay for on-demand content'

Thursday, June 11 2009, 14:15 BST

By Andrew Laughlin

New research has claimed that consumers are now reluctant to pay for online on demand content because of the popularity of free services such as BBC iPlayer.

According to a survey by Entertainment Media Research and legal firm Wiggin, just 25% of users would pay an enforced charge to download or stream new movies, while only 5% would pay to access news content.

However, 48% of respondents said they would agree to a monthly fee of 3 to view HD movies and TV shows and a further 48% would pay 8 for unlimited access to on-demand TV programming, according to New Media Age.

The report therefore suggests that providers should offer low-cost bundled digital entertainment packages to build a viable revenue stream from the content.

Entertainment Media Research chief executive Russell Hart told the website that "offering low-cost packages of entertainment" bundled with internet access may be a way to "monetise content that's currently consumed for free or stolen".

However, Hart cautioned: "In an environment where everything is free, it's difficult to persuade people to pay for anything."