YouTube reaches 300m viewing hours daily, yet behind expectations

8 Jul 2014

YouTube users now watch 300m hours of video from the video-sharing site each day, but that figure lags behind that of competitors, such as video-streaming service Netflix.

Netflix reported that globally, its subscribers consumed 2bn hours of video daily in January 2013.

Despite Google-owned YouTube increasing its daily viewing hours three-fold from 2012, its financial performance has fallen below expectations. Revenue from 2013 came in at US$3.5bn, which is lower than its original estimate of US$5bn-US$5.6bn for the same period, 9to5 Google reported.

Of the US$3.5bn in revenue generated, it is understood that 55pc of YouTube’s spend goes towards its content creators, which leaves the company with a net revenue of US$1.5bn for last year.

The competition that now exists between YouTube and established subscription streaming services, such as Hulu and Netflix, has been compounded by social networks and other sites that also enable the sharing of videos.

Earlier this year,YouTube’s attempt to purchase the game-streaming site Twitch for a reported US$1bn has been seen as an attempt to regain more control of the overall marketplace, as well as enter the e-sports market, which has been on the rise both in popularity and potential revenue streams.

While that acquisition didn’t work out, Google and YouTube now hope YouTube will garner extra revenue once it launches its new music-subscription service to compete with Spotify, Pandora and Deezer.

YouTube homepage image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic