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Canadians' viewing habits shifting to web-only: CRTC

Report finds nearly a quarter of crucial 18-to-34 demographic watching TV exclusively online

The Netflix app for iOS is seen in this file photo

Almost a quarter of Canadians in a coveted demographic for advertisers – ages 18 to 34 – have made the switch to watching TV exclusively online, according to the newest overview of the country's broadcasting sector.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission's annual Communications Monitoring Report found that 23 per cent of people in that age group watched TV online only in 2016. In total, 13 per cent of English-speaking Canadians and 4 per cent of French speakers did so. Many more Canadians are watching both online and traditional TV: 44 per cent subscribed to online streaming services, such as Netflix, CraveTV, Club Illico and Amazon Prime Video, and numbers were higher among younger viewers.

Read more: Streaming wars: The escalating battle for Canadian screens

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The shift is affecting not just how Canadians watch but how they listen: The report found that 55 per cent of Canadian adults used music videos on YouTube to listen to music, 27 per cent used personalized music streaming services and 22 per cent accessed radio stations' online streams.

The report points to the growing influence of digital content distribution. In the case of video, while Canadians still watch a significant amount of traditional TV, digital services continue to gain traction. Here's a snapshot of the industry:




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