Christmas 2020 had the highest TV viewing figures on record, YouTube use up 167%, Netgem TV figures reveal

  • Netgem reveal 27% year-on-year increase in Christmas TV viewing
  • My5 and ITV Hub have seen the biggest increase in on-demand across the Netgem platform
  • YouTube still dominates ad-funded streaming 

Netgem – the only end-to-end TV service for UK altnets and ISPs – has published data to reveal that Christmas 2020 was the busiest ever Christmas season on record for TV viewing, with a 27% year-on-year increase in TV viewing compared to Christmas 2019. 

Over the Christmas period, the average number of hours viewed by households was 5.7 hours per day. However, on certain days this average peaked to over 6 hours a day, which equals over 40% of a household’s daily ‘awake time’. 

So, which TV channels and streaming services performed the best?

  1. YouTube viewing figures increased by 167%
  2. My5 viewing figures increased by 103%
  3. ITVHub viewing figures increased by 65%

These figures do not equal the total market share of these services. The share of total viewing figures can be seen here:

Ad-funded content breaks down between the well-known Freeview Play on demand programmes (known as Broadcaster VOD or BVOD) and ad-funded streaming services (AVOD) like YouTube, W4Free who recently added 100+ free movies.

For the traditional broadcasters, top shows like BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing final or Channel 4’s Bake Off specials topped the charts, but the biggest growth came from ITV Hub with mega hits over Xmas such as the “Hey Tracey Christmas Special” or “Gary Barlow’s Night At The Museum” and “The Voice” restarting on the first week of Jan. Even more so, from My5 (Fifty Shades trilogy over Xmas, and generally UK viewers realising the depth of content within My5 with content from PlutoTV, CBS Reality, popular US series from Paramount and some strong flagship shows well relayed in social media such as the “Meghan and Harry: In their Own Words” documentary).

Commenting on Netgem’s Christmas viewing figures showing a significant rise in free and AVOD services, Maria Rua Aguete, Senior Research Director Omdia, said:

 “Netgem’s latest streaming figures point to important trends we are also seeing: in a year where we have relied on streaming services to keep us entertained, consumers are increasingly turning to improved free-to-air or ad-supported streaming services, all while having to keep an eye on affordability and pressures on household budgets.”


Notes to editors: 

  • Netgem provides for a end-to-end affordable TV service for the ever growing altnet and challenger ISP market that includes leading telcos such as Origin Broadband, Community Fibre, Hyperoptic and the like deploying full fibre broadband across the UK, covering more than 3 million households, with a market share growing to 12.6% by the end of this year, according to leading analyst house Point Topic. Just a few days ago Netgem TV underpinned the launch of Community Fibre TV, the new TV service for London’s fastest ultrafast broadband provider and best rated on Trustpilot.
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