Disney+, HBO Max, Apple+ Make New Top-10 SVODs Ranking

Newcomers Disney+, HBO Max and Apple+ have entered this year’s list of the top 10 U.S. subscription over-the-top video (aka subscription-based video-on-demand) services, produced by marketing research and consulting firm Parks Associates.

Parks also reports that 78% of U.S. broadband households subscribe to at least one OTT service, up from 71% the previous year.

The 2020 ranking is based on estimated subscriber numbers through September 2019, gathered through Parks’ OTT Video Market Tracker.

The specific subscriber numbers are in its annual paid Tracker report, but not released publicly with the ranking.

As in 2019, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu lead in paid subscriptions.

Those top three services are now followed by Disney+, ESPN+, HBO Max, Apple TV+, CBS All Access, Showtime and Starz.

MLB.TV and Sling TV, ranked eighth and tenth last year, didn’t make this year’s list.

But Parks’ 2019 ranking was based on estimated subscribers through October 2019, prior to the 2019 launches of Disney+, Apple TV+ (as well as the 2020 launches of HBO Max and Peacock).

In the 2019 ranking, HBO Now (since rebranded as HBO) was ranked fourth, followed by CBS All Access, Starz, Showtime, MLB.TV, ESPN+ and Sling TV.

With MLB.TV bumped off the top 10, ESPN+ is the only sports SVOD on the list now.

NBCUniversal's Peacock is starting to make paid-subscription inroads, but its base currently comprises mainly users of its free ad-supported tier, notes Parks.

"For many years, the ‘Big 3’ in OTT — Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu — have ruled the top of the subscription-based OTT service space," said Parks Research Director Steve Nason. "However, with newer entrants and expanded offerings, that trend may be about to change. The Big 3 and their main challengers have gone to market with varying content and distribution strategies, with the same goal in mind: Reach elusive consumers with a compelling content offering and user experience, to be a foundational essential service in an OTT subscriber's service stack."

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