One in five Aussies watch Netflix on the toilet – and other fun streaming stats

Australians are streaming the hottest Netflix content during work meetings, on toilets, and even while at funerals.

These are just some of the insights thrown up by the ‘Aussie Fandoms’ report, a survey of Australian streaming habits and preferences, undertaken by Netflix and YouGov.

The survey was conducted last July, using a nationally representative sample of 1,003 Australians, aged 13-60, who have access to any streaming service at home. Not surprisingly, given the genesis of the research, the study found that Netflix leads the pack, with 68% of Australian viewers reporting they have access to, and personally use Netflix, in their household.

This was followed by YouTube (63%), Disney+ (38%), Amazon Prime (34%), Stan (23%), Foxtel (19%), Apple TV (17%), Binge (15%), Paramount+ (14+), and Britbox (4%).

However, while more people are using Netflix than any other streamer — including YouTube — just 6% of users say they use this service alone. Netflix is out front, but this is not a solo dance by any means.

Australian viewers spend approximately 13.6 hours a week on average streaming visual content, with 88% of viewers saying they have binged an entire program in a single day.

Aussies are most likely to cite comedy (47%) in the top three genres they stream, followed by drama (35%), documentaries (27%), thrillers (27%), and sci-fi (26%).

Now, for the fun stuff.

Look at the calendar. It’s February, and this year we are treated by 29 days – we get an extra 24 hours in 2024. Chances are, however, this year you will spend more than the entire month of February streaming TV or movies — the average Australian will stream 29.4 days of content a year, or roughly seven years of their well-spent life.

We aren’t too particular as to where we will watch, either.

For example, 21% of respondents, representing approximately 2.8 million seemingly normal Australians, will watch Netflix while on the toilet. 1.9 million of us, some 14%, will watch while supposedly working hard in the office, while 12% (1.6m) will load up their favourite doco, or whatever they happen to stream, while on a romantic date. One in ten adults have even multi-tasked with a Netflix viewing session while getting intimate with a partner. Meanwhile, with unemployment hovering near 50-year lows, 700,000 Aussie viewers say they have chucked a sickie in order to catch up on their show.

Australia, we salute you! It gets dicier, though. Around 6% of us have watched Netflix during a work call or meeting, 4% of us have streamed hard at a religious event (over half a million of us), with the same amount having surreptitiously streamed video content at a wedding (including at the reception) – while 339,000 Australians have enjoyed a solemn streaming session at a funeral.

As the report shows, streaming is a major part of our lives. This shouldn’t be too shocking, given that television has dominated free time since at least the 1950s, that being the decade when the majority of people introduced a glowing box into their households. For millions of Australians, television acts as a calming agent. A balm, if you will.

And we will! This comfort-food aspect of television is best represented by the fact that 74% of Australians will re-watch their favourite shows or movies in order to relax themselves, while 89% of workers agree that streaming helps them unwind after a stressful day at work. 83% of Australians watch or re-watch certain shows or movies in order to lift their mood when they are low, while 90% choose programming to help them escape the stress of current world events.

This is borne out by our favourite titles. When asked to deliver a top three television show list, the most popular titles were Stranger Things (36%), followed by Wednesday (25%), and The Witcher (22%). Further down the list, we had The Crown (17%), Cobra Kai (14%), and Emily in Paris (14%).

In terms of film franchises, Aussies chose Harry Potter (30%), the Marvel Universe (28%), Game of Thrones (26%), Star Wars (23%) and Lord of The Rings (21%).

The takeaways of this admittedly skewed, but ultimately representative study? Television is still popular, we are all children at heart, and when the world is offering up climate disaster, financial distress, and numerous wars – we choose instead to enrol at Hogwarts, trip back to the 1980s with Winona, or visit Central Perk and laugh at the funny way Chandler Bing elongates his words.

The biggest takeaway? We should probably clean our devices more frequently than we do – given where they’ve been…

Check out the entire study here.


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