Is the Streaming Market Locked Up?

Is the Streaming Market Locked Up?

January 11, 2022

We're headed into 2022 and the video streaming market looks to be fairly locked up. Even during the height of the pandemic and lockdowns in 2020, several services proceeded with planned launches. But 2021 saw little activity in new services launching, and the same may be true of 2022. That begs the question: Is the US streaming market (even temporarily) locked up?

Streamer's Spotlight: Is the Streaming Market All But Locked Up?

After years after numerous service launches annually, 2021 saw new streaming service launches effectively dry up. Discovery+ came to market the first week of January in 2021. After that...nothing. While it's possible we may be surprised by a major product launch this year, the more likely scenario appears to be that 2022 will be the first year in a long time that no new noteworthy streaming services enter the US streaming market.

1. Where Are the New Players?

That's a good question. There are certainly plenty of providers who one could imagine might enter the streaming service market. Fox Broadcasting, for example, still owns a large amount of content even after selling a large amount of what it owns to Disney. The company technically does not have a competing streaming service on the market despite its brand, although we've highlighted before that the company could leverage Tubi (which it purchased in 2020) as its own streaming service. To that end, Fox could perform a "soft launch" of a new service piggybacking on Tubi, though that might not count as "new".

There are others, of course. But the streaming service market in the US is fairly dense, perhaps even to the point of oversaturation. Consumers are also not rearing to sign up for yet another streaming service. Not unless a new entrant can somehow prove it has an overwhelmingly desirable content library.

2. Is This the Tipping Point?

Are we seeing the long-sought crest in the streaming market? Not so much. What we may see, however, are new entrants emerge in 2023 within the biggest streaming growth area: sports. Despite the popularity of sports, this market is still vastly underserved. The options for sports streaming are still scant, and there's plenty of room for innovation here.

3. Will Any Services Die in 2022?

It's possible some streaming services will fold in 2022, but there aren't any major services that are likely to bite the dust this year. And what is more likely to happen at this stage in the game is not services just shutting down completely, but getting purchased by competitors. We're entering that stage of acquisitions soon, and it's going to be interesting to see who buys what.

This Week's Streaming Guide

1. 'Naomi', Based on the DC Comics Series, Premieres on The CW

Based on the comics of the same name, this new series premieres on The CW TODAY (Jan. 10) at 9 PM EST. -

  2. New 'Price Is Right' Series Premieres this Wednesday 

The Price is Right at Night will give Price is Right fans the chance to watch the beloved game night! Streaming Wednesday (Jan. 12) at 8 PM EST on CBS. -

  3. John Cena Returns as 'Peacemaker' on HBO Max 

John Cena reprises his role as 'Peacemaker' from Suicide Squad with an all-new HBO Max series. Streaming this Thursday (Jan. 13) -

4. Your Childhood Returns with 'Legends of the Hidden Temple'

Season 1 of the revamped show returns from hiatus this Saturday (Jan. 16) on The CW . -

News and Industry Developments

1. HBO and HBO Max Ended 2021 with over 78M Users

The service appears to be adding subscribers at a fast clip, many of which are likely attracted to the movie releases. -

2. The CW Is Officially for Sale

The network has never turned a profit in its 15-year history, despite its DC Comics pedigree. -

3. 'Don't Look Up' Broke Netflix Weekly Viewing Record

While reviews are generally unfavorable from critics and lukewarm from general audiences, its star-studded cast appears to be doing the trick. -

4. The Next Pixar Movie Will Premiere Exclusively on Disney+

Skipping right past movie theaters, Pixar's 'Turning Red' will head straight to Disney+. -

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