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Streaming again increases TV time rates even as usage drops (NASDAQ: NFLX)

Nielsen

The percentage of TV time spent on online video increased again in August, even as back-to-school season means overall TV usage declines.

For the fifth month in a row, the market share of the TV pie has increased, to 35% following several popular new content releases, according to “Gauge“from Nielsen, the ratings giant’s monthly macro looks at TV distribution platforms.

Last month, streaming overtook cable to become top one-time TV use for the first time.

And while streaming increased its market share, cable also rose again, to 34.5%. Broadcasting also increased its market share, 22.1%. All of those stock gains were in Other Categories, down to 8.5% from 9.2% the previous month. (The “Other” category is heavily used in video games, taking a hit when kids go back to schools around the country, but also includes watching video discs.)

From a volume perspective, total TV usage fell in August, typical for the season, although broadcasts increased, thanks to general variety programming as well as a boost from sports. Cable volume is down, but that drop is also mitigated by increased sports viewing as well. Streaming volume was flat month-on-month, but up 22.6% year-over-year.

A close look at the streaming shows that audiences are turning to new and powerful content. Longtime category leader Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) lost some shares in August, from 8.0% to 7.6%, in a massive July draw powered by Strange things. YouTube / YouTube TV (NASDAQ:GOOG) (GOOGLE) increased its market share from 7.3% to tie Netflix at 7.6% for the first time.

Hulu (NYSE:DIS) (CMCSA) increased its market share to 3.7% from 3.6% the previous month, while Amazon Prime Video (NASDAQ:AMZN) dropped to 2.9% from 3.0%. Disney+ (DIS) increased slightly, to 1.9% from 1.8%, and the debut of Game of Thrones spin-off Dragon’s House helped HBO Max (WBD) increased its market share to 1.2% from 1.0% previously.

“Other Streaming” (includes smaller services like Crackle (CSSE) as well as linear emitters like Spectrum (CHAPTER), DirecTV and Sling TV (DISH)) is highlighted to 10.3% from 10.2%.

Moving on to weekly streaming ratings, the (relative) lull in hot content spring and summer means no show streamed a billion minutes in its first week since April.

The rooster is dominated by a strong second week from Netflix (NFLX) Movie Jamie Foxx Day shift, reached 957 million minutes.

It was part of a week where Netflix dominated as the overall content wave dwindled. The streaming pioneer has had nine of the top 10 most streamed shows.

Day shift followed by Netflix’s (NFLX) Sand sellers (946M minutes); Strange things (919M minutes); I have never (883M minutes); NCIS (810M minutes); Locke & Key (776M minutes); and Grey’s Anatomy (702M minutes). The only non-Netflix streamer in the top 10 overall is Disney+ (DIS), with Bluey (681M minutes).

(As a reminder, Nielsen’s streaming ratings currently combine viewing from six major players: Amazon Prime Video (AMZN), Apple TV+ (AAPL), Disney+ (DIS), HBO Max (WBD), Hulu (DIS) (CMCSA) and Netflix (NFLX).)

Pay TV Distributor: Comcast (CMCSA), Regulations (CHAPTER), Food Network (DISH), Verizon FiOS (VZ), Optimal Linking / Sudden Linking (TO US), Atlantic Broadband (OTCPK: CGEAF), Sparklight (CABO).

Relevant local broadcast codes: Nexstar Media Group (NXST), Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBHOLD), Gray TV (GTN), Tegna (TGNA), EW Scripts (SSP). National TV station: ABC (DIS), NBC (CMCSA), CBS (PARA) (PARAA), fox (FOOD) (FOXA). And some ad tech names associated with connected TVs: Trading Desk (TTD), Magnite (MGNI), PubMatic (PUBLIC), Criteo (CRTO), Roku (ROKU).

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