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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Streaming now accounts for nearly 20% of television consumption for most Americans, almost doubling since 2018, a new report from Nielsen shows.

Why it matters: The data shows how quickly consumers are flocking to streaming as a replacement or complement to traditional TV.

Details: Per the report, Netflix accounts for a whopping 31% of streaming time — the largest share of any service — followed by YouTube (21%), Hulu (12%) and Amazon Prime (8%).

  • To no surprise, younger consumers aged 18-34 are most likely to subscribe to several streaming services, and spend the most amount of their TV time streaming.
  • But the vast majority (87%) of older adults 65 years and older subscribe to at least one streamer as well, per the study, demonstrating a societal shift in how television is consumed.

Be smart: Nearly half of U.S. viewers subscribe to three or more steaming services, and that number could increase as streaming becomes even more popular.

  • While one study has suggested that the average American is willing to pay around $42 monthly for streaming services, Nielsen found most consumers (93%) are willing to increase the amount of streaming services they pay for, or at the very least, keep the ones they currently have.
Expand chart
Total Audience Report Reproduced from The Nielsen Total Audience Report, February 2020; Chart: Axios Visuals

The big picture: Last year saw one of the sharpest increases in cord-cutting ever, with almost 1.5 million video subscribers from the four biggest pay-TV providers cutting the cord, according to senior media analyst Michael Nathanson.

  • That's roughly 300,000 worse than what was expected and roughly 700,000 worse than the previous year.
  • A majority of U.S. households (73%) now have access to an internet-connected video device where they can stream video, per Nielsen, making it easier for users to find a video alternative once they do finally cut the cord.

Yes, but: As more streaming platforms emerge to compete for consumers' attention and budgets, the burden is falling on consumers to navigate an overwhelming number of streaming choices.

  • More than 646,000 shows were available in the U.S. across both linear and streaming services last year, a 10% increase from all of 2018, per the study.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

The hard math behind America's labor shortage

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Congressional Budget Office; Chart: Axios Visuals

Yes, the pandemic has created unusual temporary labor market dynamics. But in the bigger picture, the 2010s were a golden age for companies seeking cheap labor. The 2020s are not.

The big picture: In the 2010s, the massive millennial generation was entering the workforce, the massive baby bo0m generation was still hard at work, and there was a multi-year hangover from the deep recession caused by the global financial crisis.

Advocates fret Roe v. Wade's 49th anniversary could be its last

Photo: Leigh Vogel/Getty Images for Women's March Inc

As Saturday marks the 49th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court's landmark decision that legalized abortion access in the U.S., advocates warn the ruling is "more at risk now than ever."

The big picture: The Supreme Court in December heard a challenge to a Mississippi 15-week abortion ban that could throw Roe's survival into question, or at least narrow its scope.

Updated 13 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds — Omicron pushes COVID deaths toward 2,000 per day — The pandemic-proof health care giant.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies — Federal judge blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for federal workers.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults.
  5. Variant tracker