Streaming platforms commanded nearly 30 percent of American viewers’ TV usage in March, the highest in the 11 months Nielsen has measured viewing by platform.
Cable viewing also grew in March, driven by news coverage of Ukraine. Broadcast’s share dipped below 25 percent after three straight months around 26 percent of total TV use, according to Nielsen’s latest Gauge survey of TV consumption by platform.
Total viewing time across all platforms contracted some in March, falling by 4.2 percent from February — which featured high-traffic events like the Super Bowl and Winter Olympics. Streaming platforms made up 29.7 percent of TV use for the month, the biggest share yet in the Gauge rankings. The previous high was 28.9 percent in January. Netflix’s Bridgerton, which premiered March 25, helped with that share, as did The Last Kingdom (also on Netflix) and Pixar’s movie Turning Red on Disney+.
Cable continued to grab the most viewing time with 36.9 percent of all TV use in March. More than a fifth of cable’s total viewing came from news outlets, driven by coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Broadcasters, meanwhile, fell to 24.9 percent from 26 percent in February. Other TV use, including gaming and physical media playback, also fell from 10 percent of TV usage in February to 8.4 percent in March.
Among individual streaming services, Netflix remained on top with 6.6 percent of all TV use (up two tenths of a point from the prior month). YouTube was a close second at 6 percent, while Hulu, Amazon’s Prime Video and Disney+ were all fairly steady. All other streamers made up 9.8 percent of TV use, the highest mark to date.
Nielsen’s March Gauge rankings are below.
Cable: 36.9 percent
Streaming: 29.7 percent
Broadcast: 24.9 percent
Other: 8.4 percent
Netflix: 6.6 percent
YouTube (including YouTube TV): 6 percent
Hulu (including Hulu + Live): 3.3 percent
Prime Video: 2.3 percent
Disney+: 1.8 percent
All others: 9.8 percent