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Sunday, December 03 2023
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YouTube Edges Out Netflix as Teens’ Preferred Video Platform

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A new survey from investment bank Piper Sandler reveals that teenagers in the United States are favoring Google-owned YouTube over Netflix as their preferred video platform. The report, based on responses from over 9,000 US teenagers, offers a fascinating insight into the evolving landscape of video consumption and social media preferences among the youth.

Teens’ Video Consumption Preferences

The survey indicates that US teenagers allocate 28.7% of their daily video consumption to Netflix, slightly trailing behind YouTube, which commands 29.1% of their video viewing time. This data point highlights YouTube’s dominant position as a free online video provider, particularly among the younger demographic. It also underscores the increasing competition within the streaming industry as more platforms vie for consumers’ attention.

The Dominance of YouTube

The report’s findings underline YouTube’s enduring appeal among teens. The platform’s vast library of user-generated content, educational resources, and entertainment offerings make it a versatile destination for young viewers. YouTube’s diverse range of content creators, known as YouTubers, have forged deep connections with their audiences, further solidifying the platform’s status as a go-to source for video content. Additionally, YouTube’s accessibility without a subscription or paywall resonates with a younger audience that may not have the means to pay for premium services.

Shifting Preferences in Social Media

In addition to video streaming, the survey also examined teenagers’ preferences in social media platforms. TikTok emerged as the favorite social platform among teens, showing a significant 38% increase in popularity. Snap ranked second in the survey, while Instagram placed third. These results reflect the evolving social media landscape, with short-form video content gaining prominence. TikTok’s innovative format and the opportunity for user-generated content have propelled it to the forefront of social media platforms.

Music Streaming Preferences

The report also delved into music streaming preferences among teenagers. It revealed that approximately 70% of teens have used Spotify in the last six months, representing a small increase from the previous survey. Furthermore, 46% of teens have opted to subscribe or pay for Spotify, indicating a growing willingness to invest in premium music streaming services.

The Reign of the iPhone

Unsurprisingly, the survey highlighted the continued dominance of the iPhone in the lives of teenagers. Approximately 87% of teenagers own an iPhone, and 88% expect their next mobile device to be an iPhone. Apple’s iPhone remains a symbol of status and functionality among teenagers, contributing to its unwavering popularity.

Preferred Customer Service Interactions

The report also explored teenagers’ preferred methods for customer service interactions. Mobile devices emerged as the top choice for customer service interactions, commanding a 50% share. Text messaging or SMS exhibited significant multi-year gains, indicating that teens find text-based communication more convenient and effective for seeking customer service support.


The Piper Sandler survey offers valuable insights into the shifting media consumption and social media preferences of teenagers in the United States. YouTube’s dominance over Netflix in video consumption highlights the diverse content offerings and accessibility of the platform. The rise of TikTok as the favored social platform and the growing adoption of premium music streaming services demonstrate the dynamic nature of teen preferences in the digital age. Apple’s iPhone continues to maintain its strong presence, and mobile devices are the preferred mode of customer service interactions, emphasizing the significance of user-friendly communication methods. These findings provide a snapshot of the evolving media and technology landscape among today’s youth.

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