Cord-cutters drive YouTube TV subscriptions

The estimated number of YouTube TV users has reportedly crossed 6.5 million, further consolidating its status as Google’s fastest growing product.

YouTube TV added 600,000 new subscribers in the third quarter of 2023, according to new data from Leichtman Research Group. This accounts for almost half of the 1.33 million new subscribers added by the leading internet-delivered pay TV services in the period.

Hulu had 4.6 million users, followed by Sling TV with 2.1 million, and Fubo with just under 1.5 million subscribers. These online TV services added 300,000, 117,000, and 310,000 new users, respectively, according to research.

In contrast, top cable providers lost more than 1 million video subscribers in the third quarter of last year, while other “traditional” pay TV services had a loss of about 780,000 subscribers.

This means that despite strong growth of services like YouTube TV and Hulu, there was still a net loss of 465,000 users of the pay-TV market as a whole, which stood at 71.5 million users by the end of the third quarter.

The top seven cable companies, such as Comcast and Charter, shared about 34.9 million of those, while other pay TV services, such as DIRECTV and DISH TV, had 21.9 million subscribers.

Online TV services accounted for 14.7 million users, with YouTube dominating the category. Cord-cutting, a practice of canceling cable TV and channels, is a driving force behind this trend.

According to internal growth metrics, YouTube TV grew 48% from October 2022 and October 2023, making it the fastest product owned by Google, as reported by Insider.

The documents showed the service to have the highest engagement of any Google product, as well as the highest retention rate, with much of that attributed to the company’s bet on live sports streaming and a partnership with NFL.

YouTube TV launched in 2017 and is currently only available in the US.

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