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How YouTube's 'snackable' content could change the streaming landscape

Jennifer Shanker
Segment Producer

The streaming wars are heating up, with big names like Disney+ (DIS) and AppleTV+ (AAPL) set to debut next month and WarnerMedia’s HBO Max (T) and NBC’s (CMCSA) Peacock both set to be released in the spring of 2020. These new additions to the already crowded space will almost guarantee a change in landscape. But one player that people often overlook is Google-owned YouTube (GOOGGOOGL).

Deloitte has been researching how people consume media for 13 years, and one trend that has emerged is that the youngest generations have “really gone mobile,” according to Kevin Westcott, Deloitte U.S. Telecom, Media, and Entertainment Leader.

With the mobile consumption comes a desire for shorter content, which is where YouTube comes into play. “YouTube has got a really strong hold on the market around the snacking of content,” Kevin Westcott told YFi AM. “Think about it. Whether you’re on public transportation, or between classes, or on your work break, you can consume five to 10 minutes worth of content. And that’s really where they’ve solidified their user base and created a huge following.”

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 4: Detail of the YouTube logo outside the YouTube Space studios in London, taken on June 4, 2019. (Photo by Olly Curtis/Future via Getty Images)

A recent study by Piper Jaffray found that 37% of teens said they spent most of their streaming time on YouTube, beating out Netflix (NFLX), which came in at 35%. The study credits the shift in media consumption to YouTube’s wide range of content, including things like music videos, how-to-videos, blogger videos, and more.

As the streaming wars get more competitive, Westcott predicts that YouTube will continue its winning streak. “I do expect to see some creativity around professionally produced content that we may start seeing shorter segments. And there’s examples of that in the market today where people are starting to consider that users may only want to consumer 8 or 10 minutes of content. So we’re going to see more and more of that and I think YouTube has really been on the forefront of developing that audience.”


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