A survey carried out by professional services firm KPMG found out that 60 percent of UK web users would have free online content subsidised by advertising rather than having to pay for it.
In a rather obvious statement, the study claims that ad-supported content is likely to be more popular than paid-for ones, which makes even more sense during difficult economic times. Yet, even during a recession, 16 percent - that one in every six - respondents said that they would rather pay to avoid adverts.
The Financial Times reports that KPMG's research specifically targeted the music and video segment and also found out that on mobile phones 40 percent of those surveyed said that they would rather watch ads in exchange for free music.
More than a quarter said they would endure watching adverts so should they get free access to free instant messaging (ed: most networks provide with free instant messaging in a way or another anyway).
The concept of Freemium, which was made popular by Web 2.0, is exemplified by music streaming website Spotify which offers both an ad-supported service and paid-for model which brings in little value-added features.
Most experts would agree that the percentage of people actually opting for the paid for service would actually be much lower than the 16 percent KPMG figures revealed.
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One KPMG Partners, Tudor Aw, reckoned that : "This willingness to view adverts in exchange for free content is good news for advertisers and is perhaps a pointer in the ongoing debate over whether advertising or subscription is the right revenue model” . The problem though is that advertising rates are going down quickly and in many cases can't support ongoing operations. Which is why Spiralfrog and Ruckus which were supported by advertising, closed down.
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