By Andy Meeks
Imagine, for a moment, how much time a day you spend uninterrupted with family members. Got it? Now go ahead and double it. That, friends, is roughly how much time every single day the average Netflix user spends bingeing content.
It’s an estimate that comes via Streaming Observer, which found that the average Netflix user now spends a little more than an hour a day streaming content on the service. Which adds up to some 434 hours, the equivalent of 18 days, over the course of a year.
Here’s how the site arrived at those numbers. “At the end of last year, the company announced that its users streamed 140 million hours of content per day. At the time, there were 117.58 million subscribers. Simple math shows that dividing 140 million hours of content watched daily by 117.58 million subscribers results in the average user spending 1 hour and 11 minutes each day watching content on Netflix.”
One hour and 11 minutes doesn’t sound so bad, until you put it up against the roughly 36 minutes of quality, distraction-free time that other studies have found people spend with family members each day.
Here’s a closer look at what Streaming Observer has found:
“Recent studies have found that families only spend anywhere from 34 to 37 minutes of quality, undistracted time (e.g. time where they “feel they actually bond”) together on a typical day,” Streaming Observer notes. “Let’s average that out to 35.5. That means the typical subscriber spends about half as much quality time with their family as they do with Netflix.”
But there’s more. Again, these are all rough estimates, but according to the most recent annual edition of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ American Time Use Survey, the Streaming Observer data also shows that Netflix users generally spend a lot more time bingeing than they do exercising, reading and hanging out with friends. Combined!
The crazy thing is that even with numbers like this, and with Netflix binges eating up so much of users’ time already, the company’s CEO Reed Hastings thinks the company still doesn’t own enough of its users’ day. “We’re still a small fraction of every society’s overall viewing,” he said on a call with investors earlier this summer. “So I think there’s still room to go there.”
Indeed, the company is still working to grow as much and as fast as it can. During the most recent quarter, Netflix reported 130 million global subscribers, up 25 percent from 104 million in the year-ago quarter.
Per Zacks Equity Research, Netflix is hoping to add 650,000 subscribers in the U.S. and a little more than 4 million internationally in the third quarter.