Teens in the US are spending more time on YouTube than on Netflix for the first time

  • Investment bank Piper Jaffray found teens now spend more time on YouTube than they do on Netflix.
  • Teens spend 37% of their daily video streaming time on YouTube and 35% watching Netflix, according to Piper Jaffray's fall 2019 survey.
  • Still, Netflix remains much more popular among teens than Hulu and Amazon Prime, the survey found.
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YouTube edged out Netflix as the preferred video streaming platform for teens, according to a new survey from investment banking firm Piper Jaffray. 

As part of its fall 2019 survey, Piper Jaffray polled teenagers about their video habits and found — for the first time — that they spend more time on YouTube than Netflix. Teens reported spending 37% of their daily video consumption on YouTube and 35% on Netflix, according to the survey.

When Piper Jaffray asked teens about their streaming preferences in the spring, Netflix usage was at 37%, while teens spent only 32% of their daily video time on YouTube.

Piper Jaffray analysts attributed YouTube's rising popularity among teens to its diverse content options such as music videos, video game streaming, and influencer videos, according to insight from the survey.

Netflix faltered in subscriber growth during Q2, although it's expected to perform better in Q3. And it still remains much more popular among teens than its subscription streaming service competitors, according to the Piper Jaffray survey. Hulu's teen usage rates remained flat at 7% from the spring to the fall and Amazon Prime's stayed at a similarly consistent 3%.

Cable TV continued its downward trajectory. Piper Jaffray found teens only spend 12% of their daily video time watching cable TV, a 2% dip from the spring survey. In 2016, cable TV sat at 26% in the same survey.

"As teens see their households continue to migrate away from traditional TV services, we expect a growing transition of consumer content spend towards online video services," Piper Jaffray analysts wrote in the report. "Looking into 2020 and beyond, despite increasing competition from Disney and Apple, we are optimistic regarding ongoing international sub growth and price increases."

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