The above insights come courtesy of Deloitte’s sixth annual Australian Media and Digital Preferences Survey. Deloitte Australia provides audit, economics, financial advisory, human capital, tax and technology services. Its latest media survey focusses on five distinct age groups: Trailing Millennials (ages 14-27), Leading Millennials (28-33), Xers (34-50), Boomers (51-69) and Matures (70+).

Its 2017 survey provides a snapshot of how consumers are interacting with media, entertainment and technology and considers their preferences in the future. Deloitte’s resulting report uses self-reported survey data and was undertaken by an independent research organisation in March 2017. More than 2,000 consumers completed the online survey in Australia.

Authored by Niki Alcorn (Partner – National Media Leader) and Lucy Buchanan (Partner – Consulting), the Deloitte report says a change in the viewing of genres critical to broadcast audiences - namely sports and news - is cause for consideration for commercial broadcasters.

Comparing all genres, sports and news are still the ones we most often watch live (at the time of broadcast), but this has declined markedly over the last two years. This year, less than half (45%) of respondents indicated they most often watch the news on television at the time of broadcast (compared to 63% in 2015) and less than a third (29%) of respondents most often watch sport on television at the time of broadcast (compared to 38% in 2015).

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Deloitte’s report says a number of factors are likely contributing to how Australians are consuming sports content. Not least, investments made in apps by codes such as the AFL or NRL that show matches live, live streaming of content such as the Women’s Big Bash League on the Cricket Australia website, and increased access to internationally followed sports such as the NFL through platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Deloitte expects use of mobile devices for watching sport to increase in the coming year, with the introduction of offers such as Telstra’s data-free access for mobile customers to live AFL and NRL matches and Optus’s data-free streaming of the EPL.

According to Deloitte, free-to-air broadcasters will need to increasingly provide non-linear sports experiences for consumers and to communicate the value of “total video” audiences to advertisers, be that across live television, catch-up or streamed delivery.

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