Free-to-air television remains stable in the Czech Republic

Family watching TV
Photo: Midjourney AI

The wide availability of free-to-air TV channels is the most frequently cited reason why viewers do not use IPTV, satellite or cable TV. This is confirmed by the latest results of the Atmedia Index research for the first half of this year.

The number of Czechs who do not want to use pay TV services has remained relatively stable over the long term. In the first half of this year, it was 44% of viewers aged 15-69, compared to 46% at the same time and in the same viewer group two years ago.

"Digital terrestrial broadcasting has a long tradition and a stable position in the Czech Republic, which is unlikely to change in the coming years," says Pavel Müller, Head of Research and Marketing at Atmedia.

Czech viewers can watch dozens of programmes free of charge on terrestrial television, ranging from generalist to thematic channels. 36 channels participate in the official national TV measurement.

"On the other hand, the number of viewers who cite this reason is decreasing year by year. Two years ago, 67% of non-paying viewers registered, which is five percentage points more than in the first half of this year," notes Pavel Müller.

In addition to a sufficient offer of free programmes, a reluctance to pay for TV reception is another frequently cited reason. Specifically, 46% of digital terrestrial TV viewers cited this reason.

A third of free TV supporters say that pay TV is expensive. "However, even in this case, viewers' attitudes towards pay TV have changed over the last two years. In the first half of 2021, there were significantly more viewers who did not want to pay for TV reception or who thought that paid TV was expensive, namely 54% and 40% respectively," calculates Pavel Müller.

In the next 12 months, 10% of free-to-air viewers plan to switch to one of the pay TV operators. A further 24% are undecided and the remaining two-thirds plan to stay with digital terrestrial.

The research for the media representation of thematic TV channels Atmedia was carried out by the research company ResSolution/Nielsen using the CAWI method.

The survey included 3898 respondents from the Czech National Panel (Internet TV population aged 15-69, who know their type of TV reception). The survey was conducted in two waves in the first and second quarter of 2023 (5-19 April 2023, 3-16 July 2023, 28-31 July 2023).

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