Gaming streams and video more popular than Netflix, Hulu, ESPN say SuperData

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A paper from research outfit SuperData has concluded that more people watch gaming videos than the combined audiences of HBO, Netflix, ESPN and Hulu.

The “worldwide gaming video content audience” outlined in SuperData’s research currently numbers 665 million people, and there’s a predicted 21 per cent viewer increase between now and 2021.

It’s not an entirely shocking conclusion. Hulu, HBO, ESPN and Netflix are all paid services, with several not available in different parts of the world, while YouTube and Twitch are free and nearly ubiquitous on the internet. For reference though, Netflix has around 100 million subscribers, so it’s no slouch.

Breaking this number down, 54 per cent of the audience for gaming streams are male-identifying, and gamers who watch streams and videos are reported to have a higher average income than other gamers, and the inclination to get spendy.

“PC and console players who watch [gaming video content] spend over $70 a month on digital games and in-game content, 56 percent more than their non-viewer counterparts,” said the press release.

According to snippets from the report, people watched nearly 100 million hours of League of Legends in February, with CS:GO a distant but still terrifying second with 40 million hours watched on Twitch in the same month.

Twitch is also the best at monetising its viewers. It catches only 16 per cent of the audience, but earns 37 per cent of the revenue. A large part of this is down to direct subscription spend.

SuperData’s full report is $2,499, but the topline is that they predict $4.6b in revenue from gaming videos and streams this year.