Streaming Wars: YouTube Reigns Among Teens Says New Study

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While Netflix reigns supreme among the adult streaming audience, the teen demographic says it isn’t so. A recent study by Piper Sandler revealed teens in the US spend more time watching video content on YouTube than they do on Netflix.

The survey shared results from more than 9,000 teens polled across the US during the month of September, with the average age of participants being just under 16.

In a close race, teens in the survey reported spending 29.1% of their daily video consumption on YouTube. For the first time, this data showed them pulling ahead of Netflix, which came in at 28.7% of teen’s daily viewing time. Hours spent on YouTube rose among teens since last spring, with YouTube gaining nearly one percentage point, as Netflix fell behind more than two percentage points in the same period.

While YouTube and Netflix are the clear frontrunners in teen streaming, the survey showed Hulu coming in third with a share of approximately 7%, and both Disney+ and Prime Video making small gains.

The Piper Sandler survey didn’t compare YouTube and Netflix with TikTok, which instead faced off against social media platforms like Instagram and Snapchat in the study. Teens reported spending a whopping four and a half hours per day on social media (an increase from previous surveys) and 38% of teens in the polling group said TikTok is their favorite social media platform.

The investment bankers of Piper Sandler have published surveys on American teenagers twice yearly since 2001, revealing insights into their favorite brands, hottest items, and food preferences. The idea is that understanding how young people spend their time and money can help identify upcoming economic trends.

While their latest survey data shows the streaming industry is becoming more and more competitive, it bodes well for YouTube in maintaining a strong stance as a free online video provider among young people.

With quantities already at four and half hours daily, will online viewing be able to continuing growing to surpass these rates? Or will demand peak and wane? To find out more of what’s going on in the streaming wars, keep reading here.

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