Viewership surpasses broadcast before streamingtelevision, which continued, with broadcast TV ratings down 3.7 percent compared to June. The report said that broadcast TV’s share of TV viewing was 21.6%.
This new milestone reinforces streaming as the premier choice for TV viewers, driven largely by original content not found on cable or broadcast TV.
July also broke the record for the most-trafficked week in streaming, Nielsen noted. The average streaming time last month was 190.9 billion minutes per week. The Christmas week in December 2021 was the last all-time high measured by Nielsen, with 183 billion minutes.
Note that Nielsen’s report only compares shows watched on TV and an internet-connected TV. It doesn’t measure streaming via mobile or desktop, which could give streaming a bigger market share.
In fact, streaming on big screens (connected TVs, smart TVs, and game consoles) accounted for 77% of global streaming time in the first quarter of 2022, according to a report from streaming data analytics firm Conviva.
Content — especially exclusive and unique content — is key to the success of streaming services. The lift in TV ratings was primarily driven by streaming releases from Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ and HBO Max.
When Nielsen looked at the breakdown of streaming services, Netflix had the largest share of overall TV viewing among streaming platforms, at 8%. In June, Netflix was at 7.7%. So while Netflix is reporting a significant drop in subscribers, the service remains popular with TV viewers in the U.S.
Nielsen pointed to Netflix’s “Stranger Things” season four as the main driver, which had nearly 18 billion minutes watched in July. Netflix said that the fourth season of “Stranger Things” is currently the number one viewing hour of the English-language series on the platform in the first week, and it is also the most-watched season of English-language TV on the platform in the past week.
In addition, “Virgin River” and “The Umbrella Academy” also contributed nearly 11 billion minutes of combined viewing. In addition, the action thriller The Gray Man will now have its own “universe,” and the animated adventure The Sea Beast has more than 5 billion minutes watched.
Netflix founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings agrees with analysts that cable TV is nearing its end. On the second-quarter earnings call, he said: “Going forward, streaming is playing everywhere. Everyone is pouring in. In the next 5, 10 years, this is the end of cable.”
The second largest share of streaming is YouTube and YouTube TV, with a combined share of 7.3%, a nice jump from 6.9% the previous month. YouTube’s live-streaming service, YouTube TV, recently reached a milestone of its own, surpassing 5 million paying subscribers and those who have tried the service. While the streaming service doesn’t stand out in terms of original content, it’s a cheaper — and arguably — better cable alternative with access to major broadcast networks, national sports channels, and major cable TV news channel for $65 per month.
Hulu’s total share of 3.6% can be attributed to the second season of “Only Murders in the Building” and the new hit series “The Bear,” Total viewing time is 3 billion minutes. With 46.2 million subscribers, Disney+’s sister streaming service broke this year’s record of 58 Emmy nominations, compared with just 34 for Disney+. “Murder in an Apartment Building” received 17 nominations.
Craig Erwich, president of Hulu Originals and ABC Entertainment, called the show “truly the most important thing” for Hulu because of its “intergenerational appeal” and “humor and soul.” The show has been renewed for a third season.
Amazon’s Prime Video came in at No. 4 with a total share of 3%, boosted by new Chris Pratt-starring “The Terminal List” and a new season of “Black Pickets,” which accumulated Over 8 billion minutes watched. Two days ago, Amazon and Nielsen struck a deal to measure ratings for Prime Video’s “Thursday Night Football.”
According to the report, Disney+ and HBO Max had the smallest share of TV viewing, at 1.8% and 1%, respectively.
HBO Max has been under fire lately due to the removal of more than 40 productions and layoffs affecting 70 employees.
Last week, Disney+ announced that it would increase the price of its premium subscription to $10.99 a month from $7.99. US users will see the change in early December. Hulu, ESPN+ and the Disney Bundle (the ad version of Hulu) also saw price increases.