According to a report from MoffettNathanson, only two major streaming services still have room to grow in the US, and neither is Netflix.
Peacock and Paramount+ have quite a bit in common, and we’re not just talking about some hypothetical future they’re lumped into.
Streaming platform NBCUniversal, launched in 2020, and major streaming service Paramount Global, renamed from CBS All Access in 2021, are the only two major streaming platforms yet to fully mature in the US. , according to a report by MoffettNathanson using data from market research firm HarrisX.
Why those two? Although only one of them is named after a bird, Peacock and Paramount+ are birds of the same plumage. Paramount+ has an ad-supported option and an ad-free tier; Peacock has them too, as well as a very limited totally free plan. (The hit service FAST Pluto TV takes up the free streaming slot at Paramount Global.)
Peacock and Paramount+ have libraries powered by a hugely successful broadcast network, NBC and CBS, respectively, as well as a host of strong cable channels (US, Syfy, Bravo, etc. for Peacock; the “Viacom” channels “for Paramount+). Both hybrid SVOD/AVOD services are also based on children’s and sports programming.
None of that really explains why these two have room to grow their U.S. subscriber platforms, but we can: The mere fact that they’ve entered the streaming game relatively late has left that door wide open for each. We didn’t say it was a great gate, but at least they have reason for optimism.
For the top 4 streaming services Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and Disney+, the “penetration rate” (the number of subscribers divided by the size of the available market) was flat through Q3 2022. Paramount+ and Peacock grew 100 basis points each (1 percent). HBO Max penetration fell by the same number.
NBCUniversal boss Jeff Shell recently revealed that Peacock surpassed 15 million paid subscribers in the third quarter of 2022, up from 13 million at the end of the previous quarter. Paramount+ ended the second quarter of 2022 with 43 million paid subscribers. While Paramount has a clear advantage for subscribers, NBCU’s parent company, Comcast, is the one with the money; There has long been speculation that Comcast could buy Paramount Global, relatively cheaply, to achieve greater scale. NBC, CBS and the FCC would be the key barriers to that theoretical merger.
Paramount+ and Peacock were the only platforms to increase their market share in the third quarter. They are also the only ones to exhibit what analysts called “significant growth” year over year. Paramount+ grew 6 percent from the third quarter of 2021 and Peacock grew 5 percent. Hulu grew 3 percent; Disney+ and HBO Max each grew 2 percent; Amazon Prime Video grew 1 percent; Netflix was flat.
That’s not to say that Netflix didn’t have milestones in the September quarter: heck, “Stranger Things 4” debuted the second half of its season in July. The king of streaming broke his own record for the number of original episodes released in a quarter, according to HarrisX and MoffettNathanson, releasing 1,026 episodes in the third quarter. That was almost five times more than anyone else: Amazon Prime Video released 223 episodes in the summer quarter, Hulu released 194.
However, the broadcaster with the biggest viewership gains in the past three months is Fox’s Tubi advertising service, which more than doubled its viewership year-over-year, the researchers wrote. The Roku Channel, with 75 percent growth, came in second place.
Pluto and DirecTV Stream increased viewership by 60 percent each. The DirecTV streaming service, home of NFL Sunday Ticket, can thank a great start to the NFL season for much of its own raise. With 34 percent viewership growth, HBO Max was truly the only SVOD service to “significantly outperform the industry average,” according to MoffettNathanson. Credit goes to “Game of Thrones” and its dragonfire prequel “House of the Dragon.”