Netflix sharing rife as four-fifths of US homes have streaming | Media Analysis | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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While recent research has shown pay-TV plummeting in the US, streaming is steaming as a study from Leichtman Research Group (LRG) has shown the great extent of this but warns that the leading players are not fully monetising their services.
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LRG’s study, Internet-Delivered Pay-TV Services 2022, was based on an online survey of 4,400 households from throughout the US and is the fifth annual report of its kind, focused on the vMVPD category, along with other direct-to-consumer (DTC) streaming video services.

LRG found that 83% of US households have at least one streaming video service from fifteen top DTC and subscription video on-demand (SVOD) services, including 67% of all households with Netflix.

Yet LRG warned that not all Netflix and other DTC services are paid for directly by those who use them. Indeed, only nearly two-thirds (64%) with Netflix fully pay for the service and do not share it with others outside the household.

Of the third of Netflix services that are used in more than one household, 15% of Netflix services were used and paid for by those that also share them with someone outside the household and the same percentage were used in one household but also borrowed from another household that was paying for the service. In addition, 3% of services were used by multiple households that share costs and the same percentage said Netflix services were not paid for because they came with another service.

Overall, 29% of all DTC services were shared with others outside the household with 12% of all DTC services fully paid for by someone outside the household. Just over a third (34%) of adults aged 18-34 have at least one DTC service that was fully paid for by someone else, compared with 14% of those aged over 35. Adults ages 18-44 account for 65% of all with a vMVPD pay-TV service. Nearly a quarter (23%) of all vMVPD services are shared by multiple households, including 7% of all vMVPD services that are fully paid for by someone outside the household.

Nearly four-fifths (79%) of vMVPD subscribers are very satisfied with their service – compared with 76% in 2020, and 69% in 2018. Just 5% of all households had Netflix in the past year, but currently do not. This broke down to 6% for Hulu, 5% for Amazon Prime, and 5% for live pay-TV services.

“Password sharing is an inherent feature of most streaming services. Sharing helps to expand the user base and retain customers, but it also creates a gap between the number of households that have a service and actual paying subscribers,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group commenting on the Internet-Delivered Pay-TV Services 2022 report. “For example, about two-thirds of US households report having Netflix, but this includes about 10% of U.S. households that don’t pay for the service because it is borrowed from someone else’s subscription.”