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YouTube Is Dominating the Small Screen and Giving Cable a Run For Its Money on Traditional TVs, According to a New Report Streaming services, led by YouTube, are drawing record-high views.

By Sherin Shibu Edited by Melissa Malamut

Key Takeaways

  • Streaming platforms, such as Netflix and YouTube, are leaping off laptops and smartphones to bigger TV screens.
  • A June Nielsen report shows that streaming has a bigger share of the TV market than ever, more than cable, broadcast, and other TV services.
  • Certain streaming platforms, YouTube in particular, are dominating both the TV and streaming market.

You're more likely to turn on the TV to watch YouTube, Netflix, or another streaming platform than you are to watch cable.

Nielsen's June "The Gauge" report, which assessed what U.S. audiences watch through a TV screen for the previous month, found that more viewers are opting to stream content through their TVs.

YouTube had a record-high share of TV viewers across all streaming services in May; 9.7% of all views on connected and traditional TVs last month were an effort to access the platform.

About one in 10 people who turned on the TV wanted to watch YouTube.

"We're not talking about your mobile phone, your laptop, that I'm sure you see your kids using all the time, but on the biggest screen in the house, the TV," LightShed media analyst Rich Greenfield told CNBC.

Greenfield added that "every [media] executive" should be watching the trend.

Related: How Erika Kullberg Grows and Monetizes Her YouTube Channel

Netflix wasn't far behind YouTube, with new episodes of "Bridgerton" pushing the company to 7.6% of all TV views in May.

Hulu, Prime Video, and Disney+ had lower shares of 3.1%, 3.0%, and 1.8% respectively.

The streaming industry overall commanded a record-high 38.8% of views through TV in May. That means nearly two in five interactions with a TV screen last month were to access a streaming service.

Related: How To Start a YouTube Channel: Step-by-Step Guide

Streaming had a higher portion of the market than cable (28.2%), broadcast (22.3%), or any other service (10.8%).

"Now the past two summers have been notable for the share shifts towards streaming, driven by blockbuster original releases and school-age kids having more free time," Brian Fuhrer, Nielsen senior vice president of product strategy and thought leadership, stated in a video recap about the report.

Nielsen's May 2024 Report of The Gauge™: Young Sheldon Creates a Big Bang Across Platforms | Nielsen

The impact of the summer months will start to be felt in Nielsen's upcoming July 16 gauge report, which measures June's TV viewership.

Read the June report, here.

Related: How to Leverage Data to Attract and Retain YouTube Subscribers

Sherin Shibu

Entrepreneur Staff

News Reporter

Sherin Shibu is a business news reporter at She previously worked for PCMag, Business Insider, The Messenger, and ZDNET as a reporter and copyeditor. Her areas of coverage encompass tech, business, strategy, finance, and even space. She is a Columbia University graduate.

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