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Irdeto survey finds multi-screen opportunity in ad-funded content and affordable subscriptions


CSTB, MOSCOW – 27 January 2015 – Viewing pirated content is extremely common among Russian consumers, largely due to the cost and availability of legal content, according to new research from Irdeto. The online research revealed that almost three quarters of consumers in Russia (70%) watch pirated video content, with 16% watching it more than once a week – showing that pirated content is much more pervasive here than in the US, UK, Australia, Singapore and India, based on previous Irdeto global research.

In terms of video content, ad-funded services are clearly the most popular among respondents who ever watch entertainment content with 43% saying they watch video content through these services most frequently. However, almost one quarter of respondents (23%) primarily use pirate services to watch content. This makes pirate services more popular than both subscription services (20%) and pay per view (4%) in Russia. According to the research, the main reason respondents would watch pirated content is that legal content is too expensive, with 39% identifying this as the main reason they would watch pirated content. This is followed by not wanting to wait for official releases (33%) and not being available locally (24%).

The research was commissioned by Irdeto and conducted online by YouGov among a representative sample of over 1,000 Russian adults to understand content consumption and the motivators behind it. It uncovers trends in pirate content viewing, multi-screen interests and limitations in the video content market.

  • Piracy popularity increases among younger viewers: While ad-funded services are still the most popular among 18-24 year old respondents who watch entertainment content (43%), pirate services are more widely used as the main source of content among this age group. 37% of 18-24 year old respondents said they watch entertainment content through pirate services most frequently (compared to 23% when all age groups are taken into account)
  • Cost is an inhibitor for consumers: When asked about the reasons stopping them from watching more entertainment through their chosen content provider, the most identified reason is that the content providers are too expensive, which was cited by 27% of respondents. This is followed by poor connectivity (23%), lack of available content (14%) and insufficient multi-screen options (14%)
  • Desire and need for multi-screen: There is a clear desire for multi-screen services among consumers in Russia with the top three devices used to watch video content identified as desktop PCs (79% of respondents use these), smartphones (47%) and tablets (45%)
  • Downloading and security are most desired in multi-screen: When it comes to a multi-screen or internet TV service, the ability to download content to watch it later on-the-go was identified as the most important function with 18% of respondents choosing this over any other function. This was followed by a secure experience where personal data is safe (16%) and a single account which allows access across multiple devices (15%)

“The prevalence of piracy in the Russian market is clearly identified by this research, with high content costs, longer windows and lack of availability fuelling the situation,” said Andrey Silanchev, Business Development Director Russia and CIS, Irdeto. “While this is partly due to the economic situation, it’s clear that operators must make multiscreen and OTT content in this market either ad-funded or very affordable through low subscription fees. Ancillary devices outside the living room are clearly very prevalent in Russia and if pay TV operators are not fulfilling demand, this is another opportunity for pirated content services.”

For the full survey results, see the quick read report here.


The research was commissioned by Irdeto and all figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 1,002 Russian adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between15th – 22nd December 2014.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of the urban population of Russian adults (aged 18+).

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Irdeto is the world leader in digital platform security, protecting platforms and applications for media & entertainment, gaming, connected transport and IoT connected industries. Our solutions and services enable customers to protect their revenue, create new offerings and fight cybercrime. With nearly 50 years of expertise in security, Irdeto’s software security technology and cyber services protect over 5 billion devices and applications for some of the world’s best-known brands. Our unique heritage as a subsidiary of multinational media group Naspers (JSE: NPN) means that we are a well-established and reliable partner to help build a more secure future. Please visit Irdeto at

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