Amazon Prime Video gained an estimated 700,000 subscribers in the United Kingdom in the last quarter of 2021, which was ten times as many as Netflix added. Amazon took 45% of new online video subscriptions, although video is only one of its membership benefits. Netflix has the most watched programming and many satisfied subscribers, but it is getting harder to attract new ones.

Research from Kantar suggests that the number of households with an online video subscription in the United Kingdom grew to 17.1 million by the end of 2021, up almost 400,000 in the last quarter, representing around six out of ten homes.

A third of new online video subscriptions in the last quarter were from households that did not previously subscribe to such a service, while those adding an additional service made up 40% of new subscriptions.

Amazon Prime Video accounted for 45% of new online video subscriptions in the last quarter of 2021. Amazon had a similar share of new subscriptions in the last quarter the previous year. Amazon Prime offers a range of benefits, including free deliveries for many online orders, which is likely to be a factor. Nevertheless, the growth in access to Amazon Prime Video is remarkable.

In comparison, Disney+ took over 19% of new online video subscriptions, while Apple TV+ took 7%, Netflix, Britbox and Now took around 5% each, and Discovery less than 3%.

Of these, Britbox looks particularly exposed. A year ago it had half a million subscribers and it does not seem to be taking a significant share of new signups in its home market, despite prominent television promotion.

United Kingdom share of new online video subscriptions 2021 Q4. Source: Kantar.

Netflix accounted for just 5% of new online video subscriptions in the last quarter, gaining an estimated 70,000, compared to over 16% in the same quarter the previous year, suggesting that it may be approaching peak penetration. The number of people reporting that they are considering or intending to take out a Netflix subscription fell in the last quarter.

Netflix has many apparently satisfied subscribers, who seem prepared to accept price rises in return for its programming. 8 out of 10 of the most enjoyed titles on online subscription services were on Netflix, according to the Kantar research.

Kantar suggests that the market is maturing in the United Kingdom and that consumers are reaching a peak in the number of services to which they are willing to subscribe. That is going to make it harder for services to gain share, especially as more entrants joint the market.

In mid-2021, BARB estimated that Netflix was in 16.8 million households in the United Kingdom, with Amazon Prime in 12.5 million, and Disney+ in 4.8 million. 18.8 million homes had at least one online video subscription service. That included those on a trial period or using an occasional day pass.

The Kantar Entertainment on Demand tracks quarterly usage of online video subscription services based on a panel of 12,000 people in the United Kingdom, with a boost panel of 2,500 new subscribers, to measure satisfaction, loyalty, advocacy, and intent.