A JD Power insights posting has revealed the new normal in the online video arena with the plethora of new studio-based services being rapidly taken up by US viewers’ viewing time and average number of services used are both increasing.
The new research compared the state of streaming at the end of 2020 with the situation in April 2020 just after stay at home orders were announced in the US. In an effort to get a sense to how the streaming landscape had changed in that time, JD Power conducted a follow-up survey of 1,745 US adults, delving into their viewing preferences, usability challenges and future plans for using subscription-based services. One of the key things it noted was that the six-month period saw the launch of major direct-to-consumer services such as NBCUniversal’s Peacock and Time Warner’s HBO Max.
The research found that viewers increased their streaming subscriptions to an average of four streaming providers in December 2020, up from three streaming in April 2020 and with the average monthly household spend on all streaming services commensurately rising to $47 from $38. And while Netflix maintained lion’s share of the market, five of the next six-largest streaming providers all made market share gains since April 2020 with Disney+’s The Mandalorian was the most-watched show on streaming sites in December 2020.
Drilling down, the study found that half of respondents said that their household now subscribes to four or more streaming services. In April, that figure was 39%. In addition, 13% said they use as many as seven or more services. The average number of streaming subscriptions is four, up from three in April. That has caused the average monthly expenditure of streaming services to make its $9 from April to December 2020.
JD Power’s research also said that in the eyes of respondents, Netflix was still the gold standard of streaming services with more than four-fifths of respondents subscribing to the SVOD leader. Yet there was plenty of optimism for Netflix’s competitors as the service’s share declined four percentage points in the months since April (85%), while five of its next six-closest competitors all picked up ground.
Amazon Prime Video ranked second at 65% (down from 66% in April), followed by Hulu at 56% (up from 48%), Disney+ at 47% (up from 37%), YouTube TV at 20% (up from 17%), HBO/HBO Max at 22% (up from 13%) and Apple TV at 14% (up from 10%). Peacock, at 18%, had no presence in April.