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Streaming statistics

Each Canadian is expected to spend an average of $157 on streaming services in 2022

Canadians love to be entertained. Whether it’s tuning into their favourite TV show, watching a movie, listening to music or playing the trendiest video game, we are a nation that loves to see, watch and experience the latest and best that on-demand home entertainment offers.

It comes as no surprise that Canada is at the top of the global list when it comes to digital content consumption. According to a 2021 Finder survey, Canada took the fifth spot, out of 18 countries, for the most consumers with at least one streaming service subscription.

While some Canadians continue to download media most now use on-demand services to play games, listen to music, get the news or watch the latest movie or TV show.

Streaming statistics: Fast facts

According to industry projections, the use of on-demand services continues to grow and by 2027, the number of global streaming service subscriptions will reach 1.7 billion, up from 1.2 billion in 2021.

In Canada, the number of households with streaming services is expected to grow from 57% with at least one on-demand streaming service in 2017 to just over 123% by 2023, according to a DigitalTVResearch report. This increase reflects not just the number of households choosing to subscribe to on-demand services, but an increase in the number of subscription services in each Canadian household.

To help illustrate the state of streaming in Canada, here are a few key statistics:

Canadian Streaming Services Facts and Figures 2022 - Finder

Canadian Streaming Services Facts and Figures 2022 - Finder Image: Finder

Streaming statistics: On demand vs cable

Cable's pull was that it was the jack-of-all-trades—it offered a bit of everything to everyone. At one point, it was also the only kid on the block. Now, with streaming services and access to Canadian, US and international on-demand services, cable's broad reach is starting to shrink. But it's not completely gone.

According to studies from Vividata, a Toronto-based not-for-profit industry organization, where more than 35,000 Canadians are surveyed on their cable and streaming use, Canadians are choosing streaming services over cable, but not abandoning regular TV, just yet.

In their 2021 study, 65% of Canadian adults preferred watching cable TV, while 61% preferred streaming their entertainment. (Multiple viewing options were allowed). Fast-forward to 2022, where a new Vividata report shows that 56% of Canadians regularly watch cable TV, compared to 68% of Canadians who regularly watch streaming services.

Streaming statistics: Demographics

Gender differences

Men and women love streaming almost equally, with men just a little more likely to subscribe to a video streaming service than women (53.1% vs 46.9%, respectively), according to Statista.

Income differences

Streaming may be the great democratizer. According to data from Statista, those with the lowest household income make up the biggest share of video streaming subscribers in Canada. When broken out by income, the percentage of video streaming subscribers is:

  • 36.7% for the lowest-income earners
  • 32.5% for middle-income earners
  • 30.8% for high-income earners

Age differences

Age remains the biggest determining factor in whether or not a person subscribes to a streaming service and how long they spend streaming on any device.

On average, Canadian adults spend 10 hours per week streaming content, and this includes any device. It's no surprise that Canada's youngest adults between the ages of 18 and 24, spend almost an hour—11 hours per week, on average, streaming on any device.

Young Canadians between the ages of 25 to 34 are the most likely subscribers to video streaming services, according to Statista, followed by those between the ages of 35 to 44. Surprisingly, the youngest Canadian adults, those between 18 to 24 are less likely to subscribe to a streaming video game service than their older counterparts.

Not surprisingly, only 14.3% of Canadians between the ages of 45 and 54, and 11.1% of Canadians between 55 and 64 subscribe to on-demand video services.

Canada's favourite streaming services

The shift to streaming appears to have begun after Netflix launched in Canada just over a decade ago. It's no surprise, then, that the on-demand movie and entertainment service tops the list of most popular streaming service in Canada, with an estimated 45% market share. To find out more, check out our complete Netflix guide.

However, new contenders in the on-demand space are certainly vying for subscription dollars.

One of the strongest competitors in this space is Amazon Prime Video. This on-demand service was first introduced to Prime members as a bonus to their monthly Amazon priority shipping subscription.

In recent years, Amazon has been upping its game and featuring award-winning original content, which may be part of why it now captures approximately 25% of the market share in Canada. Check out our Amazon Prime Video guide.

Another popular streaming service is Apple TV Plus. Launched in 2019, this streaming service not only gave Apple fans their own method for on-demand entertainment but their commitment to original content means it's one of the few streaming platforms to launch as a direct competitor to large, traditional, production houses. Check out our Apple TV Plus guide.

Finally, the family-focused Disney brand also threw its hat into the ring when it launched Disney Plus in 2019. Since its launch, the on-demand streaming channel has converted many families into streaming households. Not only does Disney Plus feature all the familiar classics, but the latest from smash-hit production companies like Pixar, Marvel Universe and the Star Wars franchise. Check out our Disney Plus guide.

Streaming in Canada projected to grow

Despite reports of declining earnings and a drop in the number of subscribers, there still appears to be room for revenue growth in the streaming services market.

In Canada, revenue in the video streaming segment reached $476 million in 2020. According to Statista, projected revenue growth was estimated at a rate of 8.9% per year. Based on these numbers, this works out to an average revenue of $67 per user.

However, pandemic restrictions altered this landscape. Now, projections estimate that the share of households in Canada with at least one subscription to a streaming service will go from 57% in 2017 to 123% by 2023—reflecting a larger percentage of the Canadian population opting for on-demand streaming and a larger number of subscribers electing for more than one streaming service. As a result, projected annual revenue now estimates that the average revenue is now closer to $157 per user in 2022.

Year-over-year growth in streaming services

When comparing year-over-year search demand, a pattern of interest and demand begins to emerge.

For instance, the search demand for nine streaming sites showed that from April 2019 to April 2020, showed that all but one on-demand service experienced an increase in interest for their services.

Amazon Prime Video led with 179% increase in unique visits to their home page, followed by sports-focused fuboTV at 91% and documentary platform CuriosityStream at 86%.

Pandemic push

During the early days of the pandemic, in 2020, the streaming services that saw the biggest increases in interest were Sundance Now (42%), Netflix (33%),Acorn TV (29%) and Disney Plus (28%) – based on user traffic between February and March 2020.

However, the three online streaming services with the largest traffic increase were:

  1. Shudder – the thriller streaming site – 81%
  2. Amazon Prime Video – 63%
  3. Disney Plus – 48%

Converting Canadians from cable to on-demand streaming

Unlike cable TV, most streaming services let Canadians try their product before fully committing to a monthly or annual subscription. While a 7-day trial is the most common, some platforms are now starting to offer a free month of service.

1 - 20 of 22
Name Product Simultaneous streams Maximum video quality Free trial period Monthly price
Acorn TV
Acorn TV
1
HD
7 days
$8.99
OutTV via Prime Video
OutTV via Prime Video
3
4K
1 month
$3.99
Starz
Starz
1
HD
7 days
Discovery+
Discovery+
1
4K
7-days
$6.99
Apple TV+
Apple TV+
6
4K
7 days
$5.99
Discovery+ with ads
Discovery+ with ads
4
SD
7-days
$4.99
hayu
hayu
1
HD
7 days
$5.99
Crave Mobile
Crave Mobile
1
SD
7-days
$9.99
FITE TV
FITE TV
1
SD
7 days
$4.99
CBS All Access
CBS All Access
2
HD
1 month
$5.99
Crave
Crave
2
HD
7-days
$9.99
YouTube Premium Family Plan
YouTube Premium Family Plan
6
4K
1 month
$17.99
Crave Total
Crave Total
4
HD
7-days
$19.99
Funimation Premium
Funimation Premium
2
HD
14 days
$5.99
hayu 7-day free trial
hayu 7-day free trial
1
HD
7 days
$5.99
Sundance Now
Sundance Now
1
HD
7 days
$6.99
Funimation Premium Plus
Funimation Premium Plus
2
HD
14-days
$7.99
Paramount+
Paramount+
3
HD
7-days
Funimation Premium Plus Ultra
Funimation Premium Plus Ultra
2
HD
14-days
$9.99
Funimation 14-day free trial
Funimation 14-day free trial
2
HD
14-days
$5.99
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Compare up to 4 providers

Comparison shopping for the best deal

Given that budgets are tight, Canadians need to consider how and when to add a streaming service as part of their entertainment budget. To help decide what works best follow these tips:

Use free trials

Take advantage of free trials to test out services. Taking the time to test out each service helps you decide what works for your household needs and cuts the creeping cost of online streaming services.

Find all-in-one streaming platforms

While niche streaming platforms are great for avid fans or enthusiasts, most Canadians will be happy with a service that offers a good variety. For instance, Netflix offers an expansive selection of movies, TV shows.

Shop around

Want to make sure you are getting the most bang for your buck? Check out our comprehensive online streaming service guide where we compare 40 products currently available in Canada.

About Finder

Finder is a personal finance comparison site with a mission to help Canadians save, invest, spend wisely and grow their wealth. Each month Finder provides half a million Canadians—and more than 10 million globally—with independent and trustworthy financial information. Our goal is to help people make better financial decisions by providing objective, comparative insight on more than 2,000 products and services each month.

As a global fintech website and app, Finder provides consumers free access to smart money content. Whether it's expert insight, product or service comparisons or independent reviews, Finder helps consumers stay on top of their finances, while saving time and money.

Finder is available to consumers in over 50 countries, including Canada, USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. Initially launched in 2006 by three Australians—Fred Schebesta, Frank Restuccia and Jeremy Cabral—Finder's global reach now includes more than 2,000 products and services in more than 100 financial categories and provides expert content and independent reviews to more than 10 million users, each month.

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