With kids heading back to school and NFL preseason and college football ramping up on broadcast and cable TV in August, streaming services took a back seat. But one player made some surprising gains during the month.
At a time when streaming usage fell by 1.6% for the month, Peacock saw its own viewership rise by 8.3% last month, according to a report from Nielsen. The audience testing firm attributed the gain to success of The Super Mario Brothers, WWE SummerSlam and shared coverage of the NFL Hall of Fame Game. Suits, the decade-old USA Network series that has became this summer’s smash streaming sensation, also helped out, since it’s available on both Peacock and Netflix.
It’s a positive turn for a streaming service that is firmly stuck in the lower tier of offerings, below must-have options like Netflix, Hulu or Prime Video. It’s overall share of the streaming market continues to be tiny — just 1.2%, well below Netflix’s 8.2%, but above Paramount+ and the Roku Channel, with 1.1% share each.
Cord cutting has meant far more interest in streaming services, but Nielsen warns that they make take another dip with more competition from cable and broadcast in the form of broader NFL and college football coverage, as well as a narrowing of the MLB playoff race.
The other X factor will be how the Hollywood strike will affect the different services. Broadcasters are already working to fill their primetime hours with gameshows like Jeopardy and reality shows. At some point, that massive amount of content coming from the streamers will dry up, which raises the question of whether audiences will stick around.
Or will everyone just continue to binge reruns of Suits?