What Netflix’s Slow Q1 Growth Means – for Streaming Giant and Rivals Like Disney+

Tim Baysinger and Sean Burch
·1-min read

Is Netflix starting to feel the heat from its new group of streaming competitors? While the runaway leader in streaming still holds a massive lead over its newer rivals, Netflix saw its growth slow enough in the first quarter to not only miss estimates, but offer only tepid forecasts for next quarter. The streaming giant on Tuesday reported that it added 2 million fewer subscribers than it expected in the first three months of 2021. Netflix added 4 million accounts globally in Q1, bringing the company to 207.6 million subscriptions overall. That came in below the 6 million new accounts that Netflix — and Wall Street analysts — had projected. Netflix’s U.S. market share has taken a hit in the last year, which can be expected since both HBO Max and Peacock debuted in 2020, coming just a few months after Apple TV+ and Disney+ hit the market at the end of 2019. Even as it added a company-record 36.58 million new accounts globally in 2020, Netflix’s U.S. market share has been sliced from 29% to 20% since the start of 2020; that’s a 31% drop in the last year. Disney+ has cut Netflix’s lead in half by crossing the...

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