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Broadcast networks increased their share of the full TV audience — albeit ever so slightly — in July, according to Nielsen’s newest survey of cross-platform TV usage.
Events like the NBA Finals, baseball’s All-Star Game and the first couple days of the Olympics likely helped broadcasters grow their audience share to 24 percent in Nielsen’s Gauge survey for July. That’s up one percentage point from 23 percent in June. Also worth noting: The measuring period for July ended July 25, meaning most of the impact for the Olympics will come in the report for August.
Streaming also edged up, capturing 28 percent of viewers’ time for July. Streaming’s share has grown by a point in each month since Nielsen’s initial Gauge report in May. Cable remains the largest consumer of viewers’ time with 38 percent in July, though it was down two points form 40 percent the previous month. Other TV usage, including gaming and physical media playback, accounts for the remaining 10 percent.
Rankings among individual streamers were unchanged from June, with Netflix (7 percent of all TV usage) edging YouTube (6 percent) for the top spot. Hulu drew 3 percent of usage and Disney+ and Amazon’s Prime Video 2 percent each. All other streaming platforms make up 8 percent of total usage.
The Olympics may end up having a rising-tide effect across all platforms. NBC drew ratings way above its usual summer performance (though well below those of past Olympics). Brian Fuhrer, senior vp product strategy at Nielsen, noted that “Behind the scenes, sports also likely impacted streaming’s share. This includes many of the Olympics highlights clips, which were posted on YouTube, where we saw some minutes increase. We’ll stay tuned for next month when we’ll have the full impact of the games to review.”
Nielsen’s Gauge rankings for June 28-July 25 are below, followed by those for individual streaming services.
Cable: 38% (-2 points vs. June)
Streaming: 28% (+1)
Broadcast: 24% (+1)
Other: 10% (unchanged)
Amazon Prime Video: 2%
All other streamers: 8%
(All individual streaming percentages are even with June’s rankings.)
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