Streaming Video Services Made More Original Shows Than Broadcast or Cable in 2018, Report Says

December 14, 2018, 12:43 AM UTC

Online streaming platforms like Netflix and Amazon just made television history, producing the largest share of original scripted shows in 2018, the first time that’s ever happened.

Of the 495 scripted original shows released this year, 160 or 33% were produced by online platforms, according to FX research reported by Vulture. Streamers include heavy hitters like Netflix and Amazon but also Facebook Watch and Sundance Now.

Broadcast, on the other hand, produced 146 shows or 30%, basic cable produced 144 or 29%, and paid TV networks such as HBO and Showtime produced 45 shows, which is 9%, the news source reports.

Among the big changes seen in the year-to-year numbers is a 17% drop in cable’s original productions for 2018, which marks its second consecutive year of decline, Vulture reports. The trend isn’t a surprising one, considering cable has recently seen a rapid decline in subscribers.

When it began producing original shows in 2013, Netflix changed the game for television. The company was even on track to outspend Hollywood studios on content this year, though that isn’t likely to happen anymore due to two big mergers.

Regardless, the investment in content by streaming video companies has propelled over-the-top television to fast growth. In 2014, online television services accounted for 8% of scripted productions, meaning the platform has quadrupled its share of original scripted show in the past four years, according to Vulture.

And moving forward, all signs point to continued growth, with companies like Disney and Apple joining the streaming bandwagon soon.