Global Media Intelligence 2019: Netherlands

Key Features

Traditional devices and media formats still reign in many homes.

  • Smartphone penetration has surpassed that of desktops/laptops in the Netherlands. In H1 2019, 94.9% of internet users ages 16 to 64 owned a smartphone, while 86.3% owned a PC. In addition, nearly 58% of respondents owned a tablet.
  • GlobalWebIndex reported little interest in newer digital devices among internet users in the Netherlands, and that disinterest still characterizes the market to some extent.
  • Between H1 2018 and H1 2019, the share of internet users owning a smartwatch rose from 6.8% to 9.2%. Ownership climbed to double digits among males, respondents ages 16 to 34, and those in the top 25% of households (ranked by income). Smart wristbands were less popular, though, with just 5.0% of all respondents owning one, compared with 4.4% in 2018. Only 7.5% of respondents owned a smart-home device.
  • Smart TVs were the exception to this rule, with half (49.7%) of internet users owning one in H1 2019. Among 25- to 44-year-olds and respondents in middle- and high-income homes, that share was over 50%. Significant numbers were also embracing time-shifted or other digital video options. Overall, 65.0% had used a broadcaster’s catch-up or on-demand service in the prior month. (That share was about 75% among the youngest group, ages 16 to 24, and those living in the top 10% of households.) Nearly 69% of internet users had streamed any video content in the prior month.
  • Usage of subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video was slightly above the regional average, at 61.4%.
  • More than half (52.7%) of internet users had listened to digital audio in the month prior to being polled in H1 2019, though there was a sharp divide among the age groups. While nearly 85% of 16- to 24-year-olds had listened to music or other audio content, that share plummeted to 27.2% in the 55-to-64 cohort.
  • Digital video and SVOD were consumed much more in urban and affluent homes than in rural areas of the Netherlands or households at the lower end of the income scale. Digital audio was also more widespread among city dwellers but varied relatively little across income categories.
  • Voice search is advancing slowly in the Netherlands, but it is available with most smartphones via features like Siri and Cortana and via smart speakers such as the Google Home or Amazon Echo. Just 17.7% of internet users polled in H1 2019 had used a voice assistant in the prior month. Admittedly, groups that one might expect to be early adopters were more interested. Nearly one-third of 16- to 24-year-olds had used voice, as had more than a fifth of affluent respondents.


Karin von Abrams