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800,000 UK households cancel Netflix and Prime Video

800,000 households cancelled their SVOD service
(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Netflix and Amazon Prime Video lost a total of almost 800,000 UK subscribers between April and June, reports The Guardian

A survey by the Broadcast Audience Research Board (BARB) reveals that Prime Video suffered the biggest losses, shedding 589,000 households, while Netflix was shunned by a further 206,000. Membership of Sky's Now streaming also fell by 43,000.

The latest round of plug-pulling is thought to be down to the UK's cost of living crisis, which has put the squeeze on family finances and seemingly led some to cut back on Better Call Saul in order to better afford rising energy bills.

"The numbers we report today show SVOD [subscription video-on-demand] services aren’t immune as households work hard to make ends meet," said Justin Sampson, chief executive of BARB. “We don’t ask households why they choose to add or drop subscriptions, although the sharp increase in energy prices in March/April must have been a catalyst."

The survey comes just a few months after Netflix saw subscriber figures dip for the first time in a decade. Although, to be fair, significant losses were incurred after the service pulled out of Russia (700,000 subscribers), while another 600,000 users left after the service bumped up its prices in the US and Canada.

It's also worth noting that demand for streaming services was already on the wane. Research firm Kantar previously reported that more than three million UK households had cancelled a streaming service subscription this year, up from 1.51 million in the first three months of the year.

It's not all doom and gloom, though. BARB says Disney Plus added an extra 91,000 households between April and June, taking its subscriber base to 6.62m, while Apple TV Plus, which currently offers users a 7-day free trial, put on 43,000, taking its base to 1.61m.

Despite recent losses, Netflix remains the most popular streaming giant with over 220 million subscribers globally, just ahead of Prime Video on over 175 million. 

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Tom is a journalist, copywriter and content designer based in the UK. He has written articles for T3, ShortList, The Sun, The Mail on Sunday, The Daily Telegraph, Elle Deco, The Sunday Times, Men's Health, Mr Porter, Oracle and many more (including What Hi-Fi?). His specialities include mobile technology, electric vehicles and video streaming.

  • flashgordon1952
    well COVID 19 has hit every ones pockets hugely million unemployed too . Then we had the Ukraine invasion and the price of fuel and electricity . There you are folks simple economics. See we live in a world where the credit card is King. I suspect more than 80 % of house holds have at least one if not 2 credit cards now . Spending your income before you get it
    So something has to go Netflix and one day Sky and Virgin contracts But see Sky contracts are based on 18 months i think . So where Netflix and Amazon went wrong is that they did not introduce 12 month contracts silly mistake that was in my view
    I have here Sky (no films or sport except Formula one Netflix and Amazon and no credit card guys. Not had one of those since 2004 . And i am on a low pension too and my wife has no income at all .
    To me i cannot understand ( well i can actually) see how people spend more than they earn and simply use a credit card to pay for everything .
    Remember guys those rates will go up by at least 2% from all credit cards adding to the fact fuel costs through the roof and electricity so something had to go
    We live in a world i must have it now and we are prayed on by the banks
    I have even seen a TV advert ( thought they was banned now ) telling people get a loan from us at 500% or more per annum

    Perhaps if we all was more sensible ,would not get ourselves in this position in the first place . ie holidays abroad for the kids "who are you kidding " lets be honest you want o go on that holiday abroad ?
    Reply
  • sneakygloworm
    flashgordon1952 said:
    well COVID 19 has hit every ones pockets hugely million unemployed too . Then we had the Ukraine invasion and the price of fuel and electricity . There you are folks simple economics. See we live in a world where the credit card is King. I suspect more than 80 % of house holds have at least one if not 2 credit cards now . Spending your income before you get it
    So something has to go Netflix and one day Sky and Virgin contracts But see Sky contracts are based on 18 months i think . So where Netflix and Amazon went wrong is that they did not introduce 12 month contracts silly mistake that was in my view
    I have here Sky (no films or sport except Formula one Netflix and Amazon and no credit card guys. Not had one of those since 2004 . And i am on a low pension too and my wife has no income at all .
    To me i cannot understand ( well i can actually) see how people spend more than they earn and simply use a credit card to pay for everything .
    Remember guys those rates will go up by at least 2% from all credit cards adding to the fact fuel costs through the roof and electricity so something had to go
    We live in a world i must have it now and we are prayed on by the banks
    I have even seen a TV advert ( thought they was banned now ) telling people get a loan from us at 500% or more per annum

    Perhaps if we all was more sensible ,would not get ourselves in this position in the first place . ie holidays abroad for the kids "who are you kidding " lets be honest you want o go on that holiday abroad ?

    Were prayed on by the retail sector anyway. Not just banks. BP are recording massive profits through this "fuel crisis". Large grocery stores are putting prices up. Profit, profit, profit. All at the expense of the ones that keep the economic structure afloat.

    Most people (although wishing they could) will not vote with their wallets. It's just too much trouble. People who hammer credit cards do so at their own risk and it's always been this way. Almost every person rides the wave of greedy corporations and does absolutely nothing, certainly not enough to destabilise the company and make them think twice. So on we go, as we always have. The minority stamp their feet and make a statement, the rest of us sit back and pay up.
    Reply
  • flashgordon1952
    what is the answer ? TASLA owner will buy into TV and internet in a big way but he is liely to have two services one free one payed service . Still not sure if he is buying TWITTER but i can see him buying Netflix or similar company even Sky owners. he is desperate to buy something , just a question of who is next on his list now. Twitter made a huge mistake in not giving the info he wanted. But where does this leave us here in the UK ? with Netflix. "gobble gobble" yes i think he buy them out this year. he knows they are in trouble big time. , not just here but world wide and in particular the USA this is where i think he offer 2 services and three types of payed services . One a free service online and the three different services will include a full internet service with adverts. and payed service as it is today . and a yearly service on contract . This to me sounds sensible. he get Netflix cheap , buys out a internet /broadband company here and in the USA and Europe
    Reply
  • F8lee
    My question has to do with the folks who dropped Amazon Prime - I have Prime video because I pay the annual fee for Prime overall (for the free shipping, frankly, though I am enjoying "Billions" at the moment). So the real question is if those 589,000 lost subscribers actually dropped their Prime memberships for household cost savings (and maybe prevent them from buying too much on the site what with the "free shipping" temptation) and the video was an afterthought.
    Reply
  • flashgordon1952
    we both Netflix and Amazon suffering but there is worse here in the UK Amazon workers gone on strike
    Reply
  • F8lee
    flashgordon1952 said:
    we both Netflix and Amazon suffering but there is worse here in the UK Amazon workers gone on strike

    So do you think perhaps a lot of folks got fed up and just dropped their Prime memberships?
    Reply
  • flashgordon1952
    F8lee said:
    So do you think perhaps a lot of folks got fed up and just dropped their Prime memberships?
    Have to blame COVID 19 and the war for all this prices of petrol gone up from £1.30p a year back to well over £1,80 only last week 50p increase is about 30% plus increase this then reflected on Gas and electricity up by 10% or more for the same period
    You dont have to do much maths to work out something has to go . Did you know overseas holidays dropped 15 % on 2019 . Off course those who use a credit card in all this to pay things have now just cut there throats , are about to pay something like an extra 10% on it . None of this takes into consideration in regards to pay deals Railways doctors Nurses Amazon workers BT Power workers . ie list is endless these are people wo are or about to go on strike . Most it appears to be 10% But it is a vicious war against inflation and there will be losers . Me my pensions have only gone up 2% in a year . My One Billion pennies (old pennies) is simply not enough , we the pensioners are in a far worse state than anyone , simply because we do not ever go on strike . My wife and i have not had any holiday since 2010 and never abroad .
    So before people complain think of us Pensioners .
    Lucky for us we do not have a credit card at all (wife never had one and my last one was in 2004) Its the buy now pay back 30% later per annum is the problem . While people use these "things" they will get themselves in trouble . ( note my ex left me with £4000 credit card bill in 2005) .
    You need to see a citizens advice person if you have real problems . And why did you have to have that holiday in 2019 and pay with your credit card or is it this year you had one. yes i have heard all the excuses "oh it was for the kids ? " Actually it was you was it not "bring out the credit card" We pay back later with our £30k income , forgetting the fact have to pay things like rents , mortgage , loans , power bills water bills ,clothes travel. Wow where did the money go ? #
    And our total income a year ? is a huge £15k net a year after tax (wife has no income as she is too ill to work , but is not allowed any money as she is not ill enough to receive benefits) And have the normal bills of rent (council) water electricity food and still able to run a 2003 Nissan XTRAIL 2.5 petrol ) so how do we do it, we do because we have too ( still have netflix Amazon prime and Sky Formula one and internet ) . Sorry i do not have any sympathy . Your credit card is dangerous get rid of it now . Remember guys if you have kids you get child allowance , by the way how much is it now??? "per child
    Reply
  • 12th Monkey
    flashgordon1952 said:
    I have even seen a TV advert ( thought they was banned now ) telling people get a loan from us at 500% or more per annum
    I remember saying to Mrs 12th that payday loans needed regulating when they first appeared - the incumbent powers that be decreed otherwise, but soon realised that modern-day voluntary slavery was perhaps not something they should be encouraging...
    Reply