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Posted 28.10.20

Streaming Wars – There can be only one?

Is there a more generation defining act than vegetating on your sofa to stream the latest season of Stranger Things on Netflix?

“Binge watching” is a term that has only really integrated its way into our society over the last 10 years, and it looks as though it’s going nowhere fast. As more and more platforms launch for creators to share their work, we speculate on what the future holds for streaming.

Streaming all over the world

One might say that Video on Demand (VOD) has revolutionised the way in which we consume entertainment. Long gone are Saturday nights in Blockbuster deliberating for an hour (or two) over whether to rent out “Mr Bean’s Holiday”, “The Nutty Professor” or “Braveheart”. Instead, our attention has turned to Carole Baskin and Steven Avery, who have found themselves etched into modern folklore. 

Whether we like it or not, streaming has firmly established itself into our culture. While many businesses have struggled in these Covid times due to stay-at-home orders, streaming sites are among the businesses that have seen an upswing of fortune. For example, Netflix added almost 16 million people during the first three months of 2020, taking their viewership to around 183 million subscribers.

Fighting for top spot

Netflix is the clear front runner, a benefit of being the only player in the game for so long, however, more players continue to take a piece of the pie. Amazon Prime Video, which has more than 150 million members, while China’s dominant streaming service iQIYI has over 105 million paid subscribers. Disney is one of the relatively new players in the game. With the launch of Disney plus towards the end of 2019, using it’s marketing machine and back catalog of properties to amass 28.6 million subscribers in the first 3 months after launching. When you add Apple TV+, Hulu, Peacock, Quibi, HBO max we begin to see a very crowded market, all vying for a piece of the pie.

A market research report by Grand View Research found that the global streaming market was worth $42.6 billion in 2019. It’s expected to grow more than 20 percent per year and reach a total of $184.3 billion by 2027.

People take comfort in rewatching their favourite shows. The success of shows like “The Office” or “Friends” being available to watch on platforms like Netflix have given them an opportunity to showcase themselves to a completely new generation. Having instant access to your favorite programming and being able to avoid ads means uninterrupted viewing pleasure. But how many streaming services would you be happy to pay for before it became too many? Last week saw the announcement that short form streaming platform Quibi was closing up shop, who else will lose in the streaming wars?


We want to hear your thoughts on the “Streaming Wars” Is it something that you would have in your house? If you have any topics that you would like to us to write about or discuss please contact us on Facebook or Instagram @SyncStoreUK

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