Friends remains the most watched SVOD title in the UK as it emerged that half of British homes now take a streaming service.
The classic sitcom topped the list for the first quarter of 2019, according to research from GfK, ahead of Amazon’s The Grand Tour, Greg Berlanti’s thriller You and NBC comedies The Good Place and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
The Warner Media show, which airs on Netflix in the UK, and is expected to remain on the digital platform despite its parent company’s moves in the U.S. helped Netflix beat Amazon to the majority of titles in the top 20.
Fifteen of the top 20, also including The Big Bang Theory, Luther, Marvel’s The Punisher, Breaking Bad, Peaky Blinders, Grace and Frankie, Sex Education, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, The Last Kingdom, Orange Is The New Black and Umbrella Academy, have their SVOD window exclusively on Netflix.
Amazon has three of titles exclusively for SVOD in the UK including original car format The Grand Tour, The Office (U.S.) and Vikings, while both platforms share Suits and Prison Break.
The data comes as regulator Ofcom revealed that nearly half of British homes now subscribe to at least one SVOD service. Some 13.3M, which is 47% of TV households, take either Netflix, Amazon or Now TV, up from 11.2M (39%) last year.
In Q1 2019, Netflix had 11.5M UK subscriptions, Amazon Prime Video had 6M subscriptions and Now TV had 1.6M subscriptions.
Yih-Choung Teh, Strategy and Research Group Director at Ofcom, said, “The way we watch TV is changing faster than ever before. In the space of seven years, streaming services have grown from nothing to reach nearly half of British homes. But traditional broadcasters still have a vital role to play, producing the kind of brilliant UK programmes that overseas tech giants struggle to match. We want to sustain that content for future generations, so we’re leading a nationwide debate on the future of public service broadcasting.”
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