SVOD Netflix had a weak quarter, but the researchers at eMarketer see it bouncing back: Buoyed by Stranger Things, Orange Is the New Black, and Martin Scorsese movie The Irishman, it should show strong subscriber numbers for the rest of 2019, gaining 7.6% in the U.S. compared to 2018.
That strong U.S. growth will continue for years to come, eMarketer forecasts, with subscribers numbers climbing from 158.8 million in 2019 to 177.5 million in 2023.
This isn’t to say all is rosy with Netflix as increased competition—most notably Disney’s three-service bundle—will reduce its reach. It was the choice of 90% in the OTT subscription video market in 2014. This year, 87% of that group will sign on, and that will drop to 86.3% in 2023. Don’t expect Netflix to change course, however, as eMarketer forecasting analyst Eric Haggstrom says the giant will stick to the strategy that’s worked so far: spending more than competitors for new and licensed content, and keeping its price competitive.
Hulu, on the other hand, is seeing its reach increase. Of all OTT subscription customers, 41.5% will have a Hulu account this year. That’s shows a year-over-year subscriber growth of 17.5%. Amazon Prime is the second-most popular service, reaching 52.9% of U.S. OTT subscription customers.