In a new study from IneoQuest examining consumers’ experiences and tolerance level of buffering while watching digital video, respondents will wait an average of 25 seconds for buffering to stop before ceasing to watch the video. Moreover, 41% will wait less than 10 seconds. 58% of respondents said when buffering occurs, they will attempt to watch the video at a later time.
In terms of devices, the 1,015 people surveyed said most buffering problems occur with a laptop (31%) or mobile phone (30%). Which brings us to what IneoQuest terms “buffer rage,” defined as anger induced by the interrupted enjoyment of streaming video content. Those using a mobile phone to stream video experience the most buffer rage (58%). And buffering during live sporting events causes the most consumers to experience rage when it happens (23%).
The study found that overall buffering causes a moderate amount of frustration. Two thirds said they tend to be moderately frustrated, while 21% said their frustrations levels are high. About half of the group said they have experienced rage from buffering, with many comparing the level of rage to experiencing an automated phone attendant (53%) and being stuck in traffic (44%). Road rage is more common, the study found, but 31% don’t experience buffer or road rage at all.
When it comes to acting on the problem, consumers don’t do much, the report suggests. Most consumers blame their ISPs (33%), but only 11% complain to their cable company or provider (10%). Only 2% have cancelled their subscription as a result. About a third of respondents said they’d use words unfit for a G-rated movie when buffering occurs, but 47% said they’d do nothing.