In a significant shift for the television industry, streaming TV has reached new heights, capturing a staggering 37.7% share of television usage in June, according to Nielsen. This remarkable surge comes at the expense of cable and broadcast networks, which experienced a sharp decline in viewership.
Nielsen’s data reveals that streaming services such as Paramount Plus, YouTube, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, Tubi, Peacock, and more have achieved their highest shares ever. Paramount Plus, in particular, made an impressive debut, reaching the 1% share mark for the first time. Meanwhile, YouTube, Netflix, and Prime Video saw notable gains in their shares.
The decline of broadcast networks is particularly noteworthy, with their share plummeting to an all-time low of 20.8%. Comparatively, this represents a 6.6% drop, resulting in a 2-point decrease from the previous month. The numbers speak volumes about the waning popularity of traditional broadcast television.
Interestingly, the younger demographic played a pivotal role in driving the overall increase in TV usage, with individuals aged uder 17 embracing streaming and game console platforms. Nielsen reports that 90% of the young population’s increased TV consumption in June can be attributed to streaming and gaming.
Notably, the most-watched streaming program in June was S.W.A.T., available on Hulu, Netflix, and Paramount Plus. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds also contributed significantly to Paramount Plus’ success, accumulating nearly 1 billion viewing minutes.
While cable TV witnessed a slight 0.4% increase in usage during June, its share of TV viewership fell from 31.1% to 30.6%, further highlighting the dominance of streaming platforms. Even the NBA Finals failed to salvage the diminishing viewership of cable and broadcast networks.
On a year-over-year basis, the decline in traditional linear TV viewing becomes more apparent. Broadcast viewing declined by 5.6%, while cable viewing experienced an even more substantial drop of 11.6%. These figures reflect an undeniable trend that is challenging the foundation of traditional television.
As we look at the bigger picture, the combined share of broadcast and cable networks in June 2023 amounted to only 51.4%. This represents a significant decline from 57.5% in June 2022 and a drastic decrease from 63.6% in June 2021. The rapid ascent of streaming TV is reshaping the industry landscape, leaving traditional linear TV with dwindling influence and audience attention.