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Germany will overtake UK with subscription video subscribers, report says

Western Europe will have around 273 million total SVOD subscribers by the end of the decade.

Western Europe will have around 273 million total SVOD subscribers by the end of the decade.

Germany will have more streamers paying for subscription video on-demand (SVOD) services like Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus and Peacock than anywhere else in Western Europe by the end of the year, according to a new report released this week.

The report, commissioned by Digital TV Research, estimates Germany will leapfrog the United Kingdom by the end of the year in terms of subscribers to SVOD services, with around 44.4 million customers in Germany compared to 42.6 million in the United Kingdom.

France will have the third-highest number of SVOD subscribers at just under 30 million, according to the report, followed by Italy and Spain with under 20 million subscribers each.

Germany is predicted to hold onto its first place spot through at least 2029, when Digital TV Research estimates the country will have around 57 million streaming subscribers, compared to just under 49 million subscribers in the United Kingdom.

All told, countries in Western Europe are expected to have around 273 million SVOD subscribers in total by 2029, up front 210 million estimated for the end of 2023.

Simon Murray, the principal analyst at Digital TV Research, said while the United Kingdom has a more-mature SVOD market, “Germany, France, Italy and Spain will each add more subscriptions than the UK over coming years.”

German media companies are competing for subscribers against foreign services like Netflix, Disney Plus and Prime Video. In August, RTL Group said its premium streaming service, RTL Plus, counted 6 million subscribers by the end of its most-recent financial quarter. To sweeten the offering, RTL Plus is planning to offer a “super bundle” that includes streaming music, audiobooks and other digital products.

Meanwhile, traditional TV broadcasters are increasingly shifting toward digital and streaming platforms. Late last month, public broadcaster ARD said it was planning to close down at least one of its linear channels in Germany as it pushes more viewers toward digital offerings.