More People Watched Streaming Than Cable for First Time Ever, Nielsen Says

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More people watched streaming than cable in July, the first time that’s happened, Nielsen announced Thursday as part of its The Gauge report.

Streaming accounted for a 34.8% share of total TV consumption. Cable came in at 34.4% and broadcast captured a 21.6% share. This is not the first time streaming has surpassed broadcast, but it is the first time it has topped cable.

Streaming had an increase in usage of +3.2% compared to June and gained +1.1 share points. According to Nielsen, the streaming average was 191 billion viewed minutes per week.

Courtesy of Nielsen, 2022
Courtesy of Nielsen, 2022

Unsurprisingly, Netflix, which has been riding high on the latest season of “Stranger Things,” had the largest overall share with an 8% boost, and nearly 18 billion viewing minutes.

In July, cable viewing dropped -2% and -0.7 share points compared to June. Year-over-year, cable usage is down -8.9% and -3.3 share points.

Broadcast is down -3.7% in July compared to June, with a loss of -0.8 share points. Nielsen attributes the decline due to fewer sports (like the Olympics) being on the air, and also the lull in TV programming ahead of the fall TV season.

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In July 2021, broadcast had a 23.8% share, dropping to 21.6% for July 2022 representing a year-over-year change of -9.8%.

Cable had a 37.7% share in July 2021, and dropped to 34.4% for July 2022, with a year-over-year change of -8;9%.

Streaming had a 28.3% share in July 2021, and jumped to 34.8% in July 2022. It’s had a year-over-year change of +22.6%

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