Amid a formidable field of competitors, video stalwarts like Netflix and YouTube are poised to see their share of daily watch time slowly shrink in coming years, according to a first-of-its-kind report from analytics firm eMarketer.
While eMarketer states that Netflix and YouTube are the video platforms that U.S. adults watch most — a fact which shows no sign of changing — a slew of new services like Disney+, HBO Max, and Apple TV+ are bound to substantially fragment the market.
In 2018, Netflix surpassed YouTube as the most-watched video service in the U.S., clocking an average daily watch time of 23.2 minutes — besting YouTube’s 22.3 minutes. However, eMarketer predicts Netflix’s share of daily watch time will decrease from 27% in 2019 to 25.7% in 2021, while YouTube’s share of daily watch time is projected to drop from 23.4% this year to 21.7% in 2021. Nonetheless, eMarketer notes that total daily viewing time on Netflix and YouTube will continue to increase next year, to the tune of 29 minutes and 24 minutes per day, respectively. It’s their share of time spent in relation to other services that’s slated to shrink as the streaming ecosphere expands.
“Even though Americans are spending more time watching Netflix, people’s attention will become more divided as new streamers emerge,” eMarketer analyst Ross Benes said in a statement. “The video streaming landscape will get crowded, which will drive down the share of time that people devote to Netflix.”
eMarketer also predicts that in 2019, digital video will comprise 25.4% of all daily digital time for U.S. adults. Adults will spend an average of 100 minutes consuming digital video daily in 2019, according to eMarketer — including time spent on apps and browsers (but not social media).