Amazon is forecast to have the most online video subscribers in the United States, overtaking Netflix. By the end of 2021 almost 100 million households will subscribe to at least one online video service. That is forecast to rise to 106 million by 2026, and most of them will have Amazon Prime Video as part of their package.
Digital TV Research forecasts that the total number of online video subscriptions for movies, programmes and channels, excluding sports, will climb by 33% from 338 million at the end of 2021 to 450 million in 2026.
The number of services that the average household subscribing to an online video service will rise from over three to over four services.
While Netflix has been the market leader, the power of Amazon Prime Video tends to be underestimated. Unlike Netflix, online video is just one element of an Amazon subscription. Amazon also aggregates services from other parties and offers rental and purchase options.
In its latest forecast, Digital TV Research estimates that Amazon will have over 100 million subscribers in the United States in 2026. The majority of those will be subscribing for free online delivery of products. Amazon does not provide regular updates on subscriber numbers, but in April 2021 it told shareholders that it had more than 200 million Prime members worldwide. That number is forecast to increase to over 240 million in 2026.
Netflix reported that it had just under 74 million subscribers in the United States and Canada in June 2021. That number was down by 433,000 on the previous quarter. Digital TV Research forecasts that Netflix will have just under 70 million subscribers in the United States in 2026. That will represent just 15% of the total 450 million online video subscriptions in the country. Netflix is expected to reach 271 million subscribers worldwide in 2026.
Disney+ will have just under 60 million subscribers in 2026, just ahead of Hulu, which will have over 54 million subscribers, plus almost 5 million subscribers to Hulu Live.
HBO Max is expected to have 53 million subscribers in 2026. Paramount+, Peacock, Starz, and Showtime will have almost as many subscribers between them as Netflix.
Apple TV+ is forecast to have just under 9 million paying subscribers. A long tail of other services will constitute over 30 million subscriptions, or nearly 7% of the total.
“We have substantially revised our forecasts to reflect recent market developments,” said Simon Murray of Digital TV Research. “For instance, we have markedly increased our subscriber numbers for Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max and the ‘others’ category.”
Digital TV Research provides forecasts of major online video subscription services by 138 countries, regionally and globally, through to 2026.