Video streaming has 646,152 unique titles, says Nielsen data

An abundance in streaming services is causing US consumers to pay for multiple subscriptions

The video streaming industry has grown immensely in the last decade, so much so that Nielsen has determined there were 646,152 unique titles available for viewing in 2019, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

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This eye-boggling number is made up of past and current films, television series and specials, news programs and sports telecasts. It also factors in original programming released from streaming giants like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hulu, which amount to 9 percent of these titles (about 58,153 titles).

Sixteen percent of the 646,152 titles are exclusive to linear TV (about 103,384 titles), according to the report. Moreover, around two-thirds of the titles are accessible from video-on-demand services from the likes of the cable providers or large tech companies such as Apple and Amazon, which allow customers to rent or buy programs.

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Nielsen surveyed 1,000 adults to see how living in a world of streaming abundance impacts consumer habits. Sixty percent of respondents said they subscribe to more than one video service. Nielsen noted that adults between the ages of 18 and 34 were most likely to have multiple subscriptions. Forty-seven percent admitted they have at least three active subscriptions.

Additionally, 93 percent of respondents said they would keep or increase the number of video platforms they subscribe to. Three percent said they were planning to drop one or more subscriptions, while 4 percent said they were unsure.

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These findings are great news for the media companies that are rolling out streaming services this year, including NBCUniversal’s Peacock, WarnerMedia’s HBO Max, Discovery and Quibi to name a few.

John Stankey, president and chief operating officer of AT&T and CEO of WarnerMedia, speaks at HBO Max WarnerMedia Investor Day Presentation at Warner Bros. Studios on Oct. 29, 2019, in Burbank, Calif. (Presley Ann/Getty Images for WarnerMedia)

The services will have to compete with Netflix, which accounts for the largest share of streaming usage at 31 percent, according to The Hollywood Reporter. YouTube has the second-largest share at 21 percent, while Hulu comes in third at 12 percent and Amazon Prime Video snags fourth place at 8 percent. The remaining 28 percent is split between various streaming brands, which includes newcomers like Apple TV+ and Disney+.

"I think what you can expect to see is that as other services come out, and before we break anything else out, this 28 percent will probably get bigger, and you'll see pressure applied to the other brands," said Peter Katsingris, a senior vice president of audience insights at Nielsen. "Right now as we're looking at streaming services, it seems like they're pretty much all additive, with very few people that are dropping or not sure they're going to decrease."

(AP Photo/Steven Senne)

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The increased competition has also contributed to a rise in streaming consumption, according to Nielsen. Nineteen percent of total TV usage was done over a steaming service in the fourth quarter of 2019, which is 10 percent higher than the first quarter of 2018.

Nielsen hasn’t yet determined how much time is being spent on new streaming platforms but will do so after time has gone by to analyze more solid data. However, Katsingris stressed that the lack of data doesn’t mean people aren’t using other streaming services.

"They just have more options now and are shifting their behaviors," he said. "People go from platform to platform depending on what's available. But as the [new services] mature we'll break them out because we definitely want to see the impact a new streaming service does have on this ecosystem."

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