BRAZIL Corner: 280 Million Devices Are Ready for Online Video

This is the fourth BRAZIL Corner: 280 Million Devices Are Ready for Online Videoedition of Portada’s new Brazil Corner feature. According to Accenture, in the past year alone, more than half of online users favored devices other than TV sets for video viewing. This is a trend that definitely is also taking place in Brazil.

By Carla Ponte with Luiz Duarte

The room is quiet. The only sound is coming from the screen on the bed, not the table or the wall. In the family room the TV is also off, but someone on the sofa is deeply involved by the drama on another screen in their hands. The bus is not comfortable at all, but with earphones plugged in the smartphone, someone is watching a TV series. If you have not incorporated these new habits into your lifestyle yet, you have probably been experimenting at least one of them one time or another. In the “Consumer Centric Era”, consumers are not only determining which content and when they want to watch it, but also on which screen.

The past four years show dramatic shifts in how consumers use devices to watch video content. As recently as 2014, the survey revealed that nearly two-thirds (65 %) of consumers preferred the TV set for viewing TV shows. In 2016 that percentage dropped to 55% and then suffered a steep decline over the past year, dropping to 23%. According to research by Accenture, more than four in ten online consumers said they would rather view TV shows on a laptop or desktop. And some thirteen percent said they prefer watching TV shows on their smartphones, compared with 10 percent last year. The survey involved approximately 26,000 consumers in 26 countries (*), including Brazil. Ages from respondents ranges from 14 – 55 and over.


An Unstoppable Move 

This new consumer is creating and engaging a new behavior that leads to new demands and new services. But this “connected lifestyle” also provides a precious tool to media companies. “This new consumer leaves a digital trail with an immense amount of personal data”, says Rubens Oliveira, Accenture Communications Media & Technology Executive Director. Products and Services like the OTTs invest a lot in how to use this data. They consider the kind of film you watch, how long you stay connected, how many times you access certain content. “It is a package of info collected through the digital trail each of us leave behind, which is used to keep suggesting new customized content to keep us hooked.”

According to the Accenture survey, this is what this new consumer wants. They are looking for new personalized interaction to enhance their overall video experience. For instance, 44% of the 26,000 interviewed globally think that getting personalized advertising based on past online searches is useful. And eight in each 10 consumers wish they received an authentic response from a customer service representative that didn’t feel standardized or automated.

Oliveira states that this is an unstoppable move. “For this new generation and for the ones to come, broadband is like electricity. For them, it is unacceptable to live without being connected.”

The Magnifying Glass on Brazil 

“Brazil follows this global trend as Brazilian consumers are submitted to the same international online products and devices, despite having less diversity and poorer wi-fi infra-structure”, explains Oliveira. Illustratively, Netflix and Spotify are already established in the country, while Amazon and Crackle are stepping up. Apps like HBO Play, among other online services provided by Pay TV companies in Brazil, are very similar to the ones offered abroad.

When it comes to Brazil, one trend in particular called his attention. “I use a lot of public transportation to get a sense of a market and it is amazing the number of Brazilians watching movies and other kinds of entertainment on smartphones.” Indeed, this behavior is multiplying, especially in cities like São Paulo, where commuting can take from two to three hours each day. Oliveira notes one more particularity among Brazilian consumers already detected by OTTs. “Recently, Netflix provided to clients in Brazil the download option and Amazon followed the same track. Due to the high prices of Internet connectivity in Brazil, users often download content using free wi-fi connection wherever possible. The download availability will probably accelerate the VOD consumption in Brazil and the use of more types of screens.”

This perception pointed by the Accenture survey is echoed in another recent research conducted by Professor Fernando Meirelles from FGV – Fundação Getúlio Vargas – a top institutional reference for Economical Studies in the country. According to his study, Brazil has 280 million mobile devices capable of online connections, including notebooks, tablets and smartphones. “It means that we already have 1.4 mobile devices per habitant”, says Professor Meirelles. “We are living in a moment of rupture yet to be understood on all fronts: business, personal and educational.  Why do young people prefer the small smartphone screen instead of the high-end TV screen just a couple of meters away? Maybe this new behavior and its consequences are going to be understood when we have native digital teachers.”

(*) Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.

CHECK OUT prior articles of BRAZIL CORNER:

Brazil Corner: How São Paulo Intends to Become a Center of Film Production
BRAZIL Corner:João Daniel Tikhomiroff – On the Intricacies of the Brazilian Audiovisual Market
João Daniel Tikhomiroff – On Branded Entertainment, New Financing Models and More (Part 2)