In a report released by PQ Media, an emerging media research firm, global consumer spending on media content & technology grew 8.1% to $1.645 trillion in 2016 and is on pace to expand another 7.5% this year, as surging demand for digital media content and lower price hikes for new mobile devices, high-speed access and related data plans are helping to bring the digital media transformation to the growing middle class, lower-income regions and rural communities worldwide.
Global consumers spent an average of $299.97 on digital & traditional media content, access & technology in 2016, and per-capita expenditures are projected to increase at a 6.6% CAGR in the 2016-20 period, according to the new PQ Media Global Consumer Media Content & Technology Forecast 2016-20, available on PQ Media’s site.
Big government investments in new and upgraded online, mobile and telecom systems, spanning multiple markets in Latin America, Eastern Europe and Asia, where a whole new world of opportunities – from previously unavailable Wi-Fi internet access to the accelerated rollout of Smart Cities initiatives in key emerging markets and major developed nations worldwide – from India and China to Australia and the US.
In addition, digital penetration rates are gradually reaching saturation levels due to a more competitive global marketplace in which major mobile device makers and online access providers are lowering prices to convince their consumer base that mobile devices, high-speed access and digital media content are no longer nice-to-have standalone products; they have become must-have bundles for consumers and businesses.
Global consumer spending on digital media content & technology surged 12.2% to $1.051 trillion in 2016, and is pacing to finish this year with a robust, albeit decelerated, growth rate of 10.8%. By comparison, traditional media content & tech edged up only 1.6% to $593.19 billion in 2016, according to PQ Media.
Digital media devices constituted the largest digimedia platform category, generating nearly $350 billion in 2016, while digital content subscriptions were the fastest growing, up 24.4%. Digital media content & tech captured nearly 70% of overall global consumer spending on all media content & tech (traditional and digital) in 2016, gaining almost 10 share points in five years.
The US remained the world’s largest market for consumer media content, access and technology, generating $417.48 billion in 2016. US consumer spend on digimedia content & tech jumped 12.0% to $244.43 billion, as overall digital media accounted for 64% of all US consumer expenditures on media content & technology.
Content is king in the next-gen media universe, which makes digital media content via online, mobile, social and on-demand video the Caesar of the realm, particularly streaming video services like Netflix, which has expanded worldwide, and the surging popularity of digital audio services, such as Spotify, which are replacing single-unit music downloads. Publishers are proactively developing content for digital devices, as opposed to just repurposing traditional content for digital media.
Consumers have become more willing to pay for quality, digital-only content, but not all trends impacting digital media & tech are positive. Internet content & tech, particularly PCs, are posting slower growth or declines, as more end users shift to smart mobile devices to access various digimedia content. Despite this changing behavior even mobile spending are showing cracks as smartphone sales have declined in several leading markets as penetration rates near saturation.
The solid growth in consumer spending comes amid an uncertain economic environment, particularly in emerging markets that had driven growth in past years, such as China, Russia, Brazil and South Africa. Meanwhile, other markets have exhibited political upheaval, such as the Brexit vote in UK and Trump election in the US, which have left many consumers uneasy about long-term economic growth prospects.
PQ Media CEO Patrick Quinn:
“Despite the potential for chilling economic headwinds, PQ Media’s historical data consistently indicates that growth in consumer spending on media content & tech usually doesn’t mirror GDP growth. In addition, media content purchases tend to be hit driven, as evidenced by the annual fluctuations in movie attendance, which is influenced by the quality of a given year’s slate of blockbuster films. Furthermore, retailers often deeply discount mobile devices, data plans and other related digital media during economic recessions. As a result, consumer spending has outpaced GDP growth by 10 points during these economic downturns.”
Consumer spending on traditional media content & technology have exhibited some changes as well. For example, print books have seen a resurgence despite the growth of computer tablets, as the discounts for e-books have virtually disappeared. Print circulation stabilized in some markets in which consumers wanted to stay abreast of the controversial political actions.
Although cord-cutting has led to a deceleration in spend in select markets like the US, conversely spend is rising on pay TV access in other markets because it is being offered for the first time in select areas, such as parts of Italy. Meanwhile, overall TV sales continue to decline as younger demos no longer need a TV in their bedrooms and most households have shifted to high-definition sets, although SmartTV sales are surging to access over-the-top video content, according to PQ Media.
Consumer spending on media software is remains solid, but decelerating. Almost half of software purchases are for entertainment & workflow software, which is decelerating as PC sales decline and laptop purchases slow. Rather the gains in software spending is being registered by security software, given the rise in data breaches, and in cloud computing services, which are more accommodating for consumers who access and share mobile content via wireless gadgets.
About the Forecast:
PQ Media’s Global Consumer Spending on Media Content & Technology Forecast 2016-20 delivers exclusive data, analyses and projections with consistent KPI benchmarks spanning all 4 major global regions; Top 20 Media Markets; 2 broad media spending sectors (consumer content & consumer tech); 5 overall media spending segments (content unit purchases, content subscriptions, access, devices and software); and 28 digital and 14 traditional media categories.
The new Forecast examines the 2010-20 period, delivering 350 datagraphs and 120 pages of analyses, and the deep-dive Companion Excel Databook that delivers thousands of exclusive market datasets and datapoints. Download your free Executive Summary and Sample Datasets at: http://www.pqmedia.com/global-consumer-spending-on-media-content-technology-forecast-2016-20.html