Indonesia OTT consumption highest in Southeast Asia as growth hits 40 percent

Rise in ad-supported viewership drives new opportunities for advertisers

Jakarta, 15 March 2022 – OTT streaming skyrocketed in popularity during the third year of the pandemic, according to the new Future of TV study by The Trade Desk (NASDAQ: TTD). The study shows that nearly one in 3 Indonesians now stream over-the-top (OTT) and Indonesians are consuming a substantial 3.5 billion hours of OTT content every month. With a robust 40 percent year over year growth in OTT consumption, Indonesia is now leading Southeast Asia as OTT becomes the mainstream form of entertainment where people can access their favourite shows across devices anytime, anywhere.

The study comes at a time when marketers are planning the largest advertising and media spend of the year in the lead up to Eid al-Fitr. With two in three Indonesians expected to shop more online this Ramadan, key insights from this study will enable brands to optimise OTT as an effective advertising channel for this Ramadan and beyond.

Ad-supported OTT sees rapid adoption

Ad-supported viewership accelerated as Indonesians’ hunger for on-demand content grew. According to the study, there are more than 50 million viewers who rely on ad-supported OTT in Indonesia. This represents a 25 percent increase in ad-supported viewership from the prior year. Indonesia emerged as the most ad-tolerant market in Southeast Asia. Forty-two percent of Indonesians are willing to watch four or more ads for each hour of free content.

With millions relying on ad-funded content, OTT is proving to be a valuable channel for brands competing for the limited attention of consumers. The study demonstrates that OTT’s professionally produced, premium content offers advantages for brands. In particular, brand recall of OTT ads has improved significantly, with 35 percent of OTT viewers recalling the brand that was advertised, compared to 23 percent in the prior year.

“Consumers are aggressively moving towards a new model of content consumption, and this means marketers will have to develop new strategies for reaching them. OTT allows brands to reach their audience with more precision and accuracy because data can be applied to OTT campaigns in a way that’s not possible with linear TV. This incremental reach is an important element of a comprehensive TV ad campaign,” said Florencia Eka, Country Manager at The Trade Desk Indonesia.

Underscoring this point, the study also highlighted that viewers are turning to OTT, rather than traditional TV for their favourite shows. That gap between OTT and traditional TV for watching favorite shows was just 13 percent in the prior year but has now expanded to 22 percent. Gen Zs led the pack with a notable gap of 27 percent, demonstrating the growing disconnect that younger generations feel with traditional TV.

Younger viewers are driving the OTT growth and content trends

Findings reveal that 51 percent of OTT viewers are Gen Zs or young Millennials between the ages of 16-34. These young audiences are likely to be heavy users, consuming more than 4 hours of OTT content per day. Such age groups are among the most coveted by advertisers because they are at a stage in life where they are starting to build long-term brand loyalties, and they tend to be trendsetters for all age groups.

Korean content is undoubtedly Indonesia’s most popular genre on OTT. While 57 percent of OTT viewers ranked Korean amongst their top two genre, its popularity amongst female viewers is undisputed. Three in 4 (75 percent) ranked Korean content as their top preference. Meanwhile, the number of OTT viewers watching Western content plummeted, dropping 9 percentage points, compared to the prior year. While Korean drama remains the favorite genre amongst female Gen Z and young Millennial viewers, male Gen Z viewers prefer comedy, action, and Japanese anime. Young male Millennials also prefer live sports.


This study was commissioned by The Trade Desk and carried out by the world’s leading marketing data, insight, and consultancy, Kantar. Kantar surveyed 6,700 consumers about their media consumption habits, ages 16+ in the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia in November 2021.

You may download the The Future of TV 2022 report here.