Streaming's Share Of TV Viewing Time Down For 2nd Month

Although streaming continued to command the largest share of total hours spent watching TV in April, at 34%, time spent with streaming content was down 2.1% in April compared with March, and the streaming category recorded a loss in share (down 0.1 points) for the second consecutive month, according to Nielsen’s monthly tracking of broadcast, cable and streaming consumption on TVs.

Viewing for free, ad-supported streamers (FASTs) Tubi TV and Pluto TV offset April's dip in streaming consumption. Tubi usage was up 6% from March, and added 0.1 points in for a 1.1% share of total TV viewing in the month. Pluto TV viewing increased 3.9% on the month, retaining an 0.8% of TV.

Time spent watching YouTube on television (excluding YouTube TV) rose 1.5% in April, driving a 0.3-point gain in share and maintaining YouTube’s status as the most-watched streaming platform, with an 8.1% share of overall TV viewing.

Despite having the two most-watched streaming titles in April (“The Night Agent” and “Love Is Blind”), Netflix was down 7% in usage versus March and lost 0.4 points in share, for a 6.9% share of total TV.

Disney+ was down 1.7% in usage but retained its 1.8% share of television on the strength of “The Mandalorian,” which was the third most-watched streaming title in April.

Viewing via MVPD (multichannel video programming distributor) and vMVPD (virtual multichannel video programming distributor) streaming apps represented 5.4% of total television use in April, including 1.2% attributed to YouTube TV, and 0.4% to Hulu Live.

Total U.S. TV usage declined by 1.9% in April. This marked the third consecutive month of decline, but that trend that is typical as the summer months approach, according to Nielsen.

Cable was the only TV category to gain share in April (up 0.4 points, to 31.5%), boosted by an upswing in cable news viewing. This was also the first back-to-back share increase for cable since the monthly tracking began in May 2021.

Cable had the smallest dip in viewing across all categories in the month, down 0.6% versus March, and gained 0.4 share points, to account for 31.5% of total TV viewing. Cable news viewing increased 4.3% from March to April and accounted for the largest portion of cable viewing (19%). Year-over-year, time spent watching cable content was down 12%, and the category lost 5.3 share points.

Broadcast viewing was down 2.7% month-over-month in April, and its share was down 0.2 points, to 23.1%. Year-over-year, broadcast viewership was down 3.7%, and the category lost 1.6 share points.

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