TV Statistics

How long are Brits spending in front of the TV?

13 Jun 2018
More than 28 million homes in the UK have a television with the ability to sit and watch some form of streaming service like Netflix, Sky, Amazon or NOW TV – but just how long are we spending in front of the TV every day? We analysed all the latest statistics to see how glued we are to our screens.

Quick overview

  • 28.3 million homes in the UK have a television.
  • 25.8 million TV licences were issued in 2016/17.
  • Of those TV licences, 8,242 were black & white TV licences.
  • The average Brit watches 22 hours of TV every week, not including streaming services such as Netflix.
  • More than 10 million homes have a subscription view-on-demand service (SVOD) such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Now TV.

28.3 million

homes in the UK have a television in 2018.

TV ownership in the UK

We all love to keep up to date with our favourite TV shows, but just how many homes in the UK don’t have a TV at all?

TV ownership has been seeing a steady increase year-on-year, in 2018 more than 28 million of us have at least one TV in our home. Explore the graph below to see how TV ownership has increased over the last 5 years.

Number of homes with at least one TV, 2013-2018

Multiple TVs

In a modern household, owning more than one television is not unusual. We now have TVs in our bedrooms, kitchens and even bathrooms! How many households in the UK have more than one TV?

Over 15 million households in the UK have more than one TV, while just 1.25m don’t have a TV at all. Take a look at the chart below to see a detailed breakdown of the number of TVs per household.

Number of TVs per household in the UK

How long are we watching for?

You might have been told that watching too much TV can give you square eyes, but that isn’t stopping some Brits from racking up dozens of hours of viewing time every week. We analysed just how many hours a week we spend watching TV. Bear in mind the figures below are just for television shows and catch-up services, the figures don’t include anything watched on streaming services such as Netflix or Amazon Prime.

  • The average Brit watches 22.3 hours of TV every week.
  • This amounts to over 1,100 hours of TV every year.
  • That is over 50 days every year spent just watching TV.

22.3 hours

of television is watched by the average Brit, every week.


With the introduction of streaming services and catch-up TV, it is now possible to binge-watch an entire series in one sitting. So just how often are Brits binge-watching their favourite shows? For these results, binge-watching was classified as watching more than one episode in one sitting.

16-24 year olds are the most likely to binge-watch TV shows, with 82% reporting to do it monthly, compared to just 29% of those aged 65+. While a whopping 11% of 16-24 reported binge-watching TV every day.

Percentage of people who binge-watch TV

Streaming services

Streaming services have changed the way we watch TV, no longer do you need to wait a week for the next episode. Whether you stream through Netflix, Amazon Prime, Now TV or another service, more than 10 million households now have at least one streaming subscription.

  • More than 10 million homes in the UK have at least one streaming subscription in 2018.
  • This is up 23% from the year before.
  • There are more than 14 million streaming subscriptions in the UK.
  • Netflix is the UK’s most popular streaming service, with 8.2 million subscribers. That’s up 25% compared to the same time in 2017.
  • Amazon Prime experienced 41% growth over the year, adding 1.3 million new subsribers to reach 4.3 million homes.
  • NowTV experienced a similar rise at 40%, growing to 1.5 million subscribers.


More homes have at least one streaming subscription than this time last year.

The UK’s most popular streaming services

Netflix is by far the most popular streaming service in the UK, with more than 8 million subscribers. Meanwhile Amazon Prime and NowTV have experienced huge growth over the year of 41% and 40% respectively.

Streaming Subscription Growth in Subscribers Growth Percentage Total Subscribers
Netflix 1.6 million 25% 8.2 million
Amazon Prime 1.3 million 41% 4.3 million
NowTV 0.4 million 40% 1.5 million

How much are we spending?

With so many different streaming services out there, it’s easy to end up with multiple subscriptions. So just how much are Brits spending on streaming services?

You can see more statistics on our TV streaming habit on this page.

What are we watching?

What shows are capturing the imaginations of Brits? We dived into the latest statistics to see which programmes we are watching and which ones we aren’t.

  • “Blue Planet II” was the most viewed TV show in 2017 with 14.01 million of us tuning in.
  • “Strictly Come Dancing” and “I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here” followed closely behind in 2nd and 3rd place respectively.
  • Netflix series “Stranger Things” attracted 1.3 million of their (then) 6.5 million subscribers when the new series aired in November 2017.
  • Meanwhile an episode of “Blue Peter” that aired on the 17th June 2017 had 0 recorded viewers.
  • For all media enquiries, please contact

    Matt Mckenna
    UK Communications Manager
    M: +44 747 921 7816
    T: +44 20 3828 1338

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