BARB: U.K. Added 500,000 SVOD Subscriber Homes in Q3

The United Kingdom finished the third quarter (ended Sept. 30) with 19.3 million homes subscribing to an SVOD service. That up about 500,000 homes from the second quarter, ended June 30, according to new data from Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB).

The agency found that Netflix continued to dominate household SVOD penetration with 16.7 million homes having access to the streamer, up from 16.5 million homes in the second quarter.

Prime Video, which originated as LoveFilm in the United Kingdom in the early 2000s, had 13 million U.K. homes, up from 12.6 million homes in Q2. Disney+ rounded out the podium with 7.6 million homes, an increase of 400,000 homes from 7.2 million in the second quarter.

Apple TV+ ended the quarter with 2.2 million homes, up from 1.9 million households in Q2. Paramount+ ended the period with 1.9 million homes, an increase from 1.7 million homes in Q2, when BARB began to report on the service. Finally, Now TV ended the quarter with 1.9 million homes, a drop from 2 million homes in Q2.

“The latest data again shows how SVOD services have established themselves within the U.K. viewing ecosystem,” Justin Sampson, CEO of BARB, said in a statement.

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The executive said that more than two thirds of U.K. homes subscribe to at least one SVOD service — driven by increased niche content offerings.

“Our viewing data shows how new titles and library programming combine to drive time spent with these SVOD services,” Sampson said in a statement.

BARB: Netflix, Prime Video See Q2 Market Share Declines in the U.K.

Subscription streaming VOD pioneers Netflix and Prime Video saw slight viewership declines in the United Kingdom in the second quarter, ended June 30, according to new data from Broadcaster’s Audience Research Board (BARB).

Netflix and Prime Video saw their market leading household penetration drop to 57.7% of U.K. homes, down from 59% in the first quarter ended March 31. Another 44% of homes had access to Prime Video in Q2, down from almost 45% in Q1.

Among other SVOD services in the United Kingdom, Comcast-owned NOW remained unchanged at 7.1% of U.K. households, as did Apple TV+ with 6.6% penetration. Disney+ saw a slight uptick with 25.2% penetration, up from 24.8% in Q1. The quarter saw the arrival of Paramount+, which generated 5.9% U.K. household penetration.

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U.K. Lost 340,000 SVOD Subs in Q1 — Driven by Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+

The U.K. might be the second-largest country with streaming video-on-demand subscribers, but that tally fell in the first quarter, ended March 31.

New data from Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB) indicates that 19.08 million U.K. homes (67.4% of households) had access to a SVOD service in Q1, down 1.7% from 19.42 million households in the fourth quarter, ended Dec. 31, 2022.

Netflix, Prime Video and Disney+ saw small quarterly drops in the number of U.K. homes with access to their services: 16.96 million homes had access to Netflix in Q1 2023, down 1.1% from 17.15 million in Q4 2022. Another 12.90 million homes had access to Prime Video down 1.7% from 13.12 million, and 7.14 million homes had access to Disney+, a decline of 1.9% from 7.28 million in Q4 2022.

By contrast, Now TV and Apple TV+ saw quarterly gains. About 2.03 million homes had access to NOW in Q1, up 8% on 1.88 million in Q4 2022. And 1.91 million homes had access to Apple TV+, an increase of 13% from 1.69 million homes in Q4.

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Netflix Signs Up for BARB Media Measurement in the U.K.

Netflix has agreed to allow the Broadcasters Audience Research Board (BARB) to report on the streamer’s daily viewership across the United Kingdom.

Beginning Nov. 1, BARB will report Netflix viewing daily, covering both the service’s reach and program viewership to its clients. BARB currently reports viewing for more than 300 pay-TV channels, broadcast video-on-demand (BVOD) and (AVOD/SVOD) services in the U.K.

Netflix viewing data will be available to all BARB clients on the morning of Nov. 2 through existing viewing analysis software and data-processing bureau.

“Back in 2019, at the RTS conference in Cambridge, I welcomed the idea of Netflix audiences being measured independently,” Reed Hastings, co-founder/co-CEO of Netflix, said in a statement. “We’ve kept in touch with BARB since then and are pleased to make a commitment to its trusted measurement of how people watch television in the U.K.”

Through 2022, U.K. broadcasters’ linear channels and on-demand services have accounted for two-thirds of all identified viewing, while SVOD/AVOD services comprise about one-sixth of all viewing. The average daily viewing time to broadcasters’ services was 159 minutes in September 2022, and the average for SVOD/AVOD services was 36 minutes per day.

“We took a big step forward last year when we started reporting audiences to streaming services,” said Justin Sampson, CEO of BARB. “Netflix’s commitment to BARB sends a clear signal that what we’re doing is valuable to new and established players in the market.”

Netflix has nearly 14 million subscribers in the U.K.

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Disney+, Apple TV+ Saw Big Q1 Market Gains in the U.K.

Disney+ and Apple TV+ saw big market gains across U.K. households in the first quarter (ended March 31), according to new data from Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board, the U.K.’s television audience measurement survey.

The data enables BARB to understand the characteristics of U.K. households, part of ensuring that its daily reporting of television audiences is representative of the whole population.

During the quarter 6.53 million homes had access to Disney+, up 19% from 5.49 million homes in fourth quarter (ended Dec. 31, 2021). Another 1.57 million homes had access to Apple TV+, up 27% from 1.24 million homes in the previous quarter.

The survey found that the number of U.K. households with access to a subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) service reached 19.57 million homes (68.5% of households), an increase of almost 500,000 homes since Q4 2021.

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Of those homes, Netflix maintained a dominating market presence at more than 88%, or 17.29 million homes, up 3% from 16.79 million homes in the previous quarter.

Another 13.35 million homes (68%) had access to Amazon Prime Video, up 6% from 12.57 million in Q4 2021. More than 2.13 million homes had access to Comcast/Sky’s Now TV, an increase of 4% from 2.06 million the previous quarter.

The number of U.K. homes with two or more services now stands at 13.2 million homes (46.3% of households), up from 12.4 million homes in Q4 2021.

U.K. Remains Netflix’s No. 2 Subscriber Market

The United Kingdom was Netflix’s second international market launch in 2012 following Canada in 2010. Through the first quarter 2020, the U.K. now represents slightly more than 13 million Netflix subs — second-largest behind North America with 69.9 million.

New data from Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board found that Netflix’s appeal in the U.K. after eight years remains strong, with the SVOD pioneer upping its sub base 13.4% from 11.46 million in 2019. Amazon Prime Video upped it sub base 32% to nearly 7.9 million homes, while Sky’s Now TV is found in 1.6 million homes.

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In Q4 2019, the proportion of homes with at least one SVOD subscription was 50.5%, a majority of homes for the first time. That percentage now tops 53% at 15 million. The percentage of homes with at least two services reached 24%, or 6.67 million homes.

Netflix and Amazon saw similar levels of growth in the number of households that subscribe to their services,” BARB wrote in a statement. “Amazon’s increase represents a larger year-on-year percentage growth versus Netflix’s due to Amazon’s lower number of household subscribers.”

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Report: Multiscreen Data Changing TV Viewership Numbers

The final season of “Game of Thrones” set weekly viewership records for both the series and HBO network. Much of that data is attributed to how consumers have changed watching TV from a live event to on-demand and over-the-top streaming video.

New analysis from nonprofit Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB) in the United Kingdom contends traditional “overnight” viewership data represents only part of the picture. Indeed, displacement viewing has made tracking data correctly more complicated.

BARB suggests that on average people watch 29.3 daily minutes of time-shifted TV content, which results in a 15% uptick in overnight viewership. Sometimes that margin is even greater.

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Live viewing for the first episode of reality series “Shipwrecked” on Jan. 28th was watched by 219,000 people. But the 7-day viewership tally ballooned to 685,000.

TV viewership isn’t limited to the television anymore, thanks to TV Everywhere apps.

“Love Island” gained 27% incremental viewing from non-TV devices, while “Family Guy” viewership increased 8%. Nonetheless, as a whole, non-TV set devices add less than 2% to TV set viewing, according to BARB.

The report found that 1.15 million people watched the second episode of “Save Me” via Sky On Demand pre-broadcast. This was more than half of the total broadcast audience of 2.19 million. This trend increased throughout the series, with the final episode watched by 83% of viewers via Sky On Demand pre-broadcast.

BARB believes re-examining viewership trends is doubly important among the younger demo. Ad-supported YouTube and SVOD services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video remain the top challengers to pay-TV.

The report suggests that in 2018, unidentified viewing accounted for 48 daily minutes for all individuals, rising to 71 minutes for 16-34-year-olds.

BARB believes that for television to become a more efficient, targeted and digital-like medium, content and distribution need to be more vertically integrated.

“In this future, new measurement opportunities may complement the data offered by BARB through the likes of set-top box data. A more digital-like television future offers the opportunity to deliver precision at scale,” read the report.

Trusted and accurate measurement remains essential to accountability, planning and optimization, and increasingly so in a world where we see displacement, fragmentation and disruption.

“Ultimately, we need to understand the value that each [viewer] exposure drives for advertisers. The outcomes are what are important; measurement allows us to link exposure to value,” said BARB.

“The industry must come up with a measurement solution enabling better understanding of viewing patterns across all screens and channels. This is still some years away, even in the most advanced markets.”

Amazon Prime Video U.K. Grew Faster Than Netflix in 2017

Amazon Prime Video grew its subscriber base 11% in the United Kingdom in 2017, compared to 9% sub growth for rival Netflix, according to recent data from ratings firm Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (BARB).

The firm said Prime Video ended the year with 4.3 million subs, compared to 8.1 million for Netflix. Prime Video ended 2016 with 3 million subs, compared to 6.5 million for Netflix.

Prime Video, which is included in the annual Prime membership, together with Netflix and Now TV accounted for 10.2 million combined subscribers – which trails multiplatform pay-TV operator Sky with 12 million subs.

Sky’s broadband-based Now TV has about 1.5 million subscribers.

Rick Broughton, analyst with Ampere Analysis in London, told The Guardian Prime Video has attracted subs by melding enhancements in ecommerce with upticks in original content spending on programs such as “The Grand Tour,” sports rights to ATP Tennis and future “Lord of the Rings” TV series.

“Amazon is making big strides to invest in content, but it is still not close to the extent of the Netflix originals slate and it doesn’t yet have the same brand perception for TV as Netflix does,” Broughton said. “If Amazon continue to invest at the rate they are … bundling it with the general attractiveness of Amazon Prime, there is a good chance they could catch up in the future.”