Streaming grows TV-usage lead even as Broadcast marks seasonal growth
The ongoing fall television season means that viewing of broadcast TV got another bump, but that didn’t make a real dent in streaming, which gained share as a form of TV usage for the eighth straight month.
Total TV viewing rose another 2.2% in October after gaining 2.4% in September – and broadcast viewing gained share again, rising to 26% of total television usage from the prior month’s 24.2%, according to “The Gauge” from Nielsen, the ratings giant’s monthly overall look at TV delivery platforms.
That was thanks to the further arrival of new fall programming along with the ongoing football season. Broadcast viewing volume jumped 9.8% overall, with sports volume up 19% and general drama jumping 42% from the prior month. Still, broadcast viewing was down 6.2% year-over-year as part of a secular decline.
And Streaming share grew again, but at a slower rate – to 37.3% overall, leading all uses yet again. Broadcast and Streaming’s added share came at the expense of Cable (which saw its share of the pie drop to 32.9% from 33.8%) and “Other” use – a category that is heavily videogaming use but also includes viewing video discs – which fell to 3.8% from 5.1%.
Zooming in on the Streaming share, YouTube/YouTube TV (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL) built its lead over other services (to 8.5% share from 8.0%) after it took over the top spot from Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) last month. Netflix, for its part, dipped to 7.2% share from a previous 7.3%.
Disney’s services did well: Hulu/Hulu Live (NYSE:DIS) (CMCSA) was next behind Netflix, growing its share to 4.0% from 3.8%, while Amazon Prime Video (AMZN) dipped to 2.8% from 2.9%. And Disney+ (DIS) ticked up to a 2.0% share, from last month’s 1.9%. HBO Max (WBD) fell to 1.1% from 1.3%, and free ad-supported channel Pluto (PARA) (PARAA) fell to 0.9% from last month’s 1.0%.
“Other streaming” (including smaller services like Crackle (CSSE) as well as linear streamers like Spectrum (CHTR), DirecTV and Sling TV (DISH)) grew its share again, to 10.8% from 10.7%.
Turning to weekly streaming ratings, while Netflix (NFLX) may be slowly shedding share to competitors, it’s still dominating with the top-viewed programs overall. The Watcher (NFLX) repeated atop the most recent weekly ratings (for Oct. 17-23), with 2.595B minutes streamed, an easy winner over The School for Good and Evil (NFLX), with 1.058B minutes, and HBO Max’s (WBD) House of the Dragon, fueled by the release of its season finale to third place and 1.013B minutes streamed.
Dragon rival The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (AMZN), which saw its finale a week earlier, dropped out of the top 10.
Rounding out that top 10 were seven more Netflix titles: No. 4, The Sinner, 935M minutes; No. 5, The Blacklist, 807M minutes; No. 6, NCIS, 796M minutes; No. 7, Gilmore Girls, 792M minutes; No. 8, CoComelon, 757M minutes; No. 9, Love is Blind, 683M minutes; and No. 10, Unsolved Mysteries, 672M minutes.
(Nielsen streaming ratings now incorporate viewing from seven major streamers: Amazon Prime Video (AMZN), Apple TV+ (AAPL), Disney+ (DIS), HBO Max (WBD), Hulu (DIS) (CMCSA), Netflix (NFLX) and Peacock (CMCSA).)
Pay TV distributors: Comcast (CMCSA), Charter (CHTR), Dish Network (DISH), Verizon FiOS (VZ), Optimum/Suddenlink (ATUS), Atlantic Broadband (OTCPK:CGEAF), Sparklight (CABO).
Relevant local broadcast tickers: Nexstar Media Group (NXST), Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBGI), Gray Television (GTN), Tegna (TGNA), E.W. Scripps (SSP). National broadcasters: ABC (DIS), NBC (CMCSA), CBS (PARA) (PARAA), Fox (FOX) (FOXA). And some ad-tech names tied to connected TV: The Trade Desk (TTD), Magnite (MGNI), PubMatic (PUBM), Criteo (CRTO), Roku (ROKU). Seeking Alpha