According to Amagi’s ninth Quarterly Global FAST Report, 2023 has been a breakout year for the FAST sector, which relies on advertising instead of subscriptions.
FAST offers consumers free, linear streaming channels similar to cable television but accessed through internet-connected devices – such as Apple TV, Roku and smart TVs. While major media companies like Fox and NBCUniversal have launched their own FAST channels, much of the growth comes from independent networks aggregating content into thematic channels.
The report examined data across over 50 platforms worldwide and surveyed over 500 US households.
According to projections from OMDIA, FAST revenue will reach US$12 billion in 2027, with Statista projecting 1.1 billion users by 2025. Amagi’s data confirms that FAST is well on its way to realising those predictions.
While North America remains the largest market, the US saw more moderate FAST growth of 12% in viewing hours and 20% in ad impressions from Q2 2022 to Q2 2023. The Asia-Pacific region blew past that with increases of 181% in viewing hours and 290% in ad impressions.
Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa similarly outpaced North America.
“As we delve into the insights and data presented in this report’s latest edition, it’s clear that FAST has not just arrived; it’s thriving, expanding, and reshaping how viewers consume content,” said Srinivasan KA of Amagi.
“The remarkable growth of FAST on a global scale is both an opportunity and a testament to the evolving preferences of the modern viewer. With FAST 2.0 on the horizon, we’re entering an era where personalisation, interactivity, and innovative ad formats will be key to creating a truly dynamic and engaging linear television experience. We invite broadcasters, content owners, and advertisers to join us in this exciting journey, where we’re redefining the future of television.”
Across regions, news content remains king, accounting for the most ad impressions and viewing hours globally and in the US and Asia-Pacific. However, preferences vary from market to market.
News content contributed the most in global ad impressions (40%) and HOV (37%). These numbers are roughly on par with APAC (47% in ad impressions, 36% in HOV) and the US (44% in ad impressions, 46% in HOV).