For the first time, streaming tops broadcast
Future. TV-viewing measurement company Nielsen found that, for the first time, streaming clocked more TV usage than broadcast. The gap between the two is expected to only widen throughout the year. But, perhaps more importantly, Nielsen’s “The Gauge,” may finally bring some neutral metrics to the typically secretive world of streaming platform viewership numbers.
There’s one battle that the streaming wars have already won: beating broadcast.
- According to Nielsen’s new measurement tool, dubbed “The Gauge,” streaming made up 26% of total TV usage.
- Broadcast accounted for 25%.
- Cable still holds the largest share with 39% of total TV usage.
- The rest of the pie is taken up by “gaming and playback of physical media.”
Amazingly, Netflix and YouTube usage alone made up 12% of all TV usage overall.
Transparent for you
Nielsen noted that, back in spring 2020, streaming only accounted for 18% of TV usage, which shows how much the pandemic shifted viewing habits. The organization believes that it could reach one-third of usage by the end of this year.
Ironically, the streamers themselves are notorious for not releasing viewership stats (or at least only releasing numbers when they’re beneficial). And those stats sometimes only account for suspect metrics such as “number of viewers who watched two minutes” of a movie or show.
Nonetheless, Nielsen’s measurements could provide a more neutral accounting… something Netflix even supports. Co-CEO Reed Hastings told NYT that Nielsen is “in a good place to referee or score-keep how streaming is changing the U.S. television landscape.”