NPD: 57% of Smartphone Users Stream Video

Oct. 25, 2017
According to the NPD Group, 57% of all U.S. smartphone users access video content via an app at least once a month, with iOS users more ...

According to the NPD Group, 57% of all U.S. smartphone users access video content via an app at least once a month, with iOS users more likely than Android users to access video content, 66% vs. 49%, respectively. Streaming video is the No. 1 driver of cellular and WiFi data consumption on mobile and fixed networks, accounting for 78% of the total data used by smartphone owners, with streaming video apps like YouTube and Netflix driving the greatest data demands.

YouTube is the top-ranking video app for both iOS and Android users, with 45% of smartphone users accessing the app on a monthly basis, NPD says. Netflix has the second highest usage rate with 18% of users launching the app monthly. iOS smartphone users are much more likely to access Netflix, with nearly a quarter of them using the app within a given month, compared to 10% of Android users.

"Smartphone penetration is continuing to grow, and the battle among mobile carriers to retain current subscribers, as well as grow their base, is fierce," said Brad Akyuz, director, industry analyst for NPD's Connected Intelligence. "Access to content is becoming a key differentiator for carriers, in addition to unlimited data plans that allow consumers to watch OTT video at home and on the go with peace of mind. As the installed base of smartphones with large displays grows, we expect mobile video data consumption will do the same."

In addition to growing mobile video consumption, consumers are also looking to their TV-connected devices to stream content. Those devices include streaming media players, video game consoles, Blu-ray Disc Players and connected TVs that are connected to the Internet. NPD says consumers who use TV-connected devices to stream video grew by five percentage points vs. the same timeframe a year prior (Q2 2017 vs. Q2 2016). In total, 57 million U.S. households own a TV-connected device, up from 50 million a year ago, which is driving an increase in usage across the top video streaming services.

"Through partnerships with content providers like Netflix and DirecTV, mobile carriers are extending their reach into the consumer's living room," said John Buffone, executive director, industry analyst, NPD Connected Intelligence. "As mobile carriers continue to bundle access to content and remove barriers, such as data limitations, video usage both at home and on the go will continue to thrive."