(ECNS) -- A research report said the internet-based entertainment industry market in China is projected to hit 80 billion yuan ($11.6 billion) by the end of this year.
Guoduo Media, a Beijing-based research institute, declared 2017 the start of the "golden era" for online videos in its newly released white paper on the network industry.
The report said the audience for online videos reached 550 million by December last year, prompting the Internet entertainment market to generate 60 billion yuan in 2016, a 55.9 percent increase over the previous year.
The market that includes online video dramas, entertainment shows and films is anticipated to surge to 85.6 billion yuan by the end of 2017, according to the report. The online drama segment alone will reach 50 billion yuan in revenues by 2020.
The report said the quality of online video programs have developed and attracted a rapidly growing audience. In 2016, China's 10 video platforms showed 349 dramas that had a total broadcast length of 123,889 minutes. Full-year online video viewership grew by 226 percent over one year ago as some popular dramas grabbed 2 billion views.
The number of paid subscribers is also projected to increase dramatically over the next two years. A large survey in early 2017 found over half of viewers are willing to pay to watch online dramas and entertainment shows, while 29 percent plan to pay for movies on demand.