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Netflix, Other Streaming Services Go All Out Amid Quarantine

Ritujay Ghosh

Streaming video usage is surging as most people are quarantined in their homes due to government measures, with not too many entertainment options. Netflix, Inc. NFLX certainly seems to be the biggest gainer with record installs in the first quarter of 2020.

Per a new study by Reelgood, Netflix owned 42% of the total playback time over the past three weeks. Amazon.com, Inc.’s AMZN Amazon Prime Video and Hulu are second and third, respectively.

While the coronavirus outbreak has been biting into the profits of businesses and hurting economies, streaming service providers have emerged as one of the few gainers. In the past month, these providers have seen a surge in subscribers and installs along with longer playback time. This has also seen many companies launching new shows to attract more subscribers. Also, a few are introducing new features.

Netflix Leading the Race

Per a new study by Reelgood, Netflix owned 42% of the total playback time over the past three weeks. This, definitely, is because of the huge subscriber base the streaming giant commands. Netflix has more than 2 million subscribers in its streaming aggregation services. Amazon Prime Video and Hulu accounted for 22.1% and 17.2%, respectively, while The Walt Disney Company’s DIS Disney + accounted for a meager 4.8%.

On Apr 7, Netflix rolled out a host of features for parental control on its streaming platform. This includes options to filter out select titles and review what children are viewing. Also, the streaming giant added a new feature to protect individual profiles by using a password to prevent children from accessing content not suited to them.

Kids Content Gain Popularity

The recent boom in online streaming, gaming and downloads has also left streaming services scrambling for speed and infrastructure. Overall, sign ups jumped 99% in the past week. Streaming media viewing rose 101% in the past week compared with the first week of March, per aggregator and search engine Reelgood.

Kids’ content has particularly seen robust growth. Kids’ content viewing increased a whopping 70% in the past week, as schools remain closed due to coronavirus.

In the first quarter, Netflix led the streaming war with 59 million installs. Alphabet, Inc.’s GOOGL YouTube too has many takers. YouTube’s Kids collected $110 million in app spending in the first quarter, the highest among all major streaming apps globally, according to analytics firms Apptopia and Braze. Netflix carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Going by the hours of usage, YouTube Kids was top ranked, followed by Netflix. Also, Amazon’s game streaming platform Twitch was among the most downloaded mobile apps globally, collecting $20 million in user spending.

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