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Netflix beats out cable, broadcast, everything else as top service to watch TV

Contributed by
Jul 3, 2018

There are about a million subscription services and networks fans have to wade through in order to get the five or six great shows on TV at any given moment, but on the whole, one option reigns supreme — and it’s not close. According to a recent survey by Cowen & Co., Netflix is easily the most popular way for people to watch TV.

The streaming service even beat out cable and broadcast TV, while other streaming services weren't even close — and the lead only gets wider when you drill down into the younger demo.

A pair of easy-to-read graphs explain the survey’s responses, showing just how far ahead the Stranger Things-offering service is of the pack. Traditional and streaming competitor alike fall short of the heat Netflix is bringing in these graphs.

Check them out:

That first one is for all TV watchers, and the second one displays only those viewers between the ages of 18 and 34. For the survey of 2,500 U.S. adults conducted in May, the question was “Which platforms do you use most often to view video content on TV?” For all ages, Netflix’s victory is relatively slim: 27 percent, with basic cable the next closest at 20 percent and broadcast at 18 percent.

But when you get into the key TV-watching demo (18-34 years old), Netflix’s lead leaps: 39.7 percent beats the snot out of YouTube’s next-best 17 percent, while basic cable limps in third with 12.6 percent.

The streaming giant’s huge push to original content is aimed at sustaining these numbers, offering plenty of reasons for subscribers to stick around after they’ve binged through all the old shows they were using to de-stress after work. With offerings like Dark and the Marvel TV shows, Netflix’s stranglehold on viewership might not be weakening anytime soon.

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