Diverse Audiences Driving OTT Usage & Viewing

By George Winslow  Accounting for over 40% of homes consuming OTT content on CTVs, “diverse audiences represent a huge force and key driver of overall streaming growth,” Comscore said NEW YORK—New research from Comscore is highlighting a long-overlooked trend, namely the important role that diverse audiences from the African-American, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American communities are playing in driving rapid growth in streaming and OTT video consumption.  New Comscore data shows that those diverse audiences accounted for 41% of the U.S. homes viewing OTT content on connected TV devices, making them “a huge force and key driver of overall streaming growth,” the report concludes. The researchers also stressed that “diverse segment’s adoption of streaming content is outpacing the average, especially among African-American, Hispanic, and American Indians.” The data is particularly notable given the long-standing difficulties many members of those communities have in getting access to high-speed broadband and other digital services.  Comscore used data from March 2019 to March 2022 to analyze the impact of diverse audiences on OTT viewing.   During this time period, African American OTT households increased 35%, Hispanic OTT homes increased 41%, Asian OTT homes increased 69%, and American Indian OTT homes increased 66%.  Diverse audiences also increased their share of WiFi homes watching OTT from 24.7 million homes (39% of all OTT homes) in 2019 to 34.6 million (41% of all OTT homes in the U.S.) in March of 2022. When it comes to OTT hours watched per household, African Americans saw a 66% increase between March 2019 and March 2022, and American Indians increased their OTT viewing by 88% during this time period, a much faster growth than the 34% increase in OTT viewing for the whole of the U.S. In March 2022, African Americans watched 163 hours of OTT content versus 122 hours for the nation as a whole, while Hispanic households viewed 133 hours. In terms of streaming services African-American households are using 6.3 streaming services—more than the national average of 5.4 services—and Hispanic households are using slightly above average at 5.6 services. Asian households under indexed the national average, however, with 4.9 services.