Streaming is expected to surpass traditional television for the first time
- February 15, 2023
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For the first time ever, adults in the United States will spend more time watching digital video on platforms like Netflix, TikTok and YouTube than traditional TV this year, Insider Intelligence predicted on Wednesday.
In the historic premiere, Market Tracker expects “linear television” to account for less than half of daily viewership, falling to under three hours, while average daily digital video viewing will rise to 52.3 percent at 3 hours and 11 minutes .
“This milestone is fueled by people spending increasing amounts of time watching video on their largest and smallest screens, whether it’s an immersive drama on a connected TV or a viral clip on a smartphone,” said Paul Verna, principal analyst at Insider Intelligence , in a press release. “Given teenagers’ preferences for social networking and streaming video over TV, we can expect these trends to continue to shift in favor of digital.”
Netflix and YouTube are neck and neck leaders in grabbing digital video audience attention, with US adults tuning in on each platform for an average of about 33 minutes a day, according to Insider Intelligence.
Live sporting events becoming available on video streaming platforms are also helping to drive the move away from traditional television, as is the popularity of shared video clips in apps, according to Market Tracker.
TikTok is a key driver as the average time US adults spend there each day is skyrocketing, according to Insider Intelligence.
“TikTok vs. Netflix will be an important trend to watch this year,” said Jasmine Enberg, another principal analyst at Insider Intelligence. “The lines between social and entertainment have been blurred, and TikTok is now coming to the larger-screen video players.”
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew is set to testify before US lawmakers in Washington in March, where the Chinese social media app will be accused of ties to the Communist Party in Beijing.
TikTok, whose parent company ByteDance is Chinese, is struggling to survive in the United States with increasing demands from mostly Republican lawmakers that the company should be banned outright over its alleged ties to China.
Insider Intelligence noted that while Twitter isn’t primarily a video platform, the total time US adults spend on the platform is expected to fall this year and next as user numbers dwindle.
“The problem is that Twitter’s efforts to encourage more original videos, from Vine to Fleets, have so far been unsuccessful,” Enberg said. “Twitter owner Elon Musk’s attempts to get more videos into the app, including potential incentives for YouTube creators to post on Twitter, will be in vain to improve the time all US adults spend, be it.” because it also manages to fend off a user rejection.”