Published July 14th, 2017
Netflix is continuing to dominate streaming services in the U.S., not only in terms of penetration in cord cutters’ homes, as reported in April, but also in time spent watching. According to data from comScore, cord cutters are watching more Netflix each month than YouTube, Hulu and Amazon Video combined. But Hulu users are more engaged with the service on a daily basis, the study indicates.
The data from comScore was cited by MarketingCharts in its own report released this morning, and follows on earlier findings that the user base for subscription video services has now topped the cable TV audience, indicating a shift in how people in the U.S. are today watching television.
Netflix in April accounted for 40 percent of over-the-top viewing hours, compared with 18 percent for YouTube, 14 percent for Hulu, and 7 percent for Amazon Video. It also has the most monthly viewing days per household at 12.3 days.
But when you look at viewing behavior on a day-by-day basis, Hulu is far ahead of the pack.
On average, U.S. cord cutters are watching 2.9 hours of Hulu per day, which is ahead of Netflix (2.2 hours), YouTube (2.1 hours), and Amazon Video (2 hours).
Though MarketingCharts’ report didn’t delve deeply into why that’s the case, the primary reason is simply due to the fact that Netflix has higher penetration in the U.S.
However, the new figures may point to key differences in how consumers watch the different streaming services, too.
Netflix, for example, likely encourages more binge watching sessions, because of how it drops entire seasons of shows at once – like the recent release of Season 5 of “Orange is the New Black,” where a single event – a prison riot – is told across 13 episodes. The entire season feels like one, long story, not a dozen or so separate ones.
Meanwhile, Hulu’s partnerships enable streaming access to network and cable TV programming, which in turn has people tuning into its service on a more regular basis to see if new episodes of their favorite shows are available.
Or, in other words, Hulu is taking the place of traditional TV in the cord-cutting era, while Netflix has become associated with an entirely different style of viewing.
In fact, Netflix has been credited with the invention of this new storytelling “art form” – something that sits in between being a TV show but isn’t quite a film, either. Storytellers have adapted their content to cater to binge watchers, too, by telling these longer stories, and sometimes even crafting entire first seasons that function as the “pilot,” instead of just the first episode.
Plus, these TV stories don’t have to rely as much on things like manipulative cliff-hangers – a holdover from the network TV era where shows needed a hook to pull people back next week. Now, storytellers can instead count more on Netflix’s auto-play feature, which loads up the next episode immediately after the current one ends.
On Netflix, it takes more effort to stop watching than to keep bingeing.
The new data doesn’t definitively prove that these factors have contributed to why Netflix is capturing more viewing hours, but they likely play a role.
Apr 22, 2017
Aug 15, 2017
According to new research from The Diffusion Group (TDG), binge viewing — that is, viewing more than one episode of a TV series back to back — is rapidly becoming universal, with nearly nine-in-ten ABUs binging at least occasionally. But the frequency of binge viewing skews strongly in favor of younger adults.TDG's new analysis, Binge Viewing - A Consumer Snapshot, identifies and profiles three groups of adult broadband users in terms of their binge viewing habits.
Heavy Bingers (binge daily, comprise 14 percent of ABUs),
Medium Bingers (binge monthly but not daily, comprise 51 percent of ABUs), and
Light/Non-Bingers (21 percent of ABUs that binge less than once a month, 14 percent that do not binge at all).
Importantly, TDG analysts found that the frequency of binging is strongly correlated with the viewer's age. For example, 58 percent of Heavy Bingers are between the ages of 18 and 34, while 56 percent of Light/Non-Bingers are age 45 and older."The fact that 31 percent of Heavy Bingers are between the ages of 18 and 34 further illustrates just how different millennial viewing habits are from those of older generations," notes Michael Greeson, President and Principal Analyst at TDG. "For more than a decade, TDG has predicted and observed a structural transformation in what it means to 'watch TV,' with viewing behavior slowly changing from an activity defined by flipping between different live shows on different networks, to one characterized by on-demand binging of individual series."As these consumers age and younger generations steeped in quantum habits follow behind them, Greeson argues that this behavior will only become more prominent, further impacting programming and distribution strategies.View TDG's latest analysis of contemporary viewing behavior, Binge Viewing - A Consumer Snapshot for an insight into the different segments of binge viewers — who they are, how they behave, and what drives their decisions and preferences.
Source: TDG Research
Jan 05, 2018