Game streaming viewership continues fading away across all markets and platforms. After falling for six straight quarters in a row, the global game streaming audience slightly recovered in the first months of 2023 but remained deep below the 2021 levels.
According to data presented by SafeBettingSites.com, global game streaming viewership dropped by 16% year-over-year, with 7.4bn hours watched in Q1 2023.
A Huge 1.5 Billion Hours Drop Year-over-Year
After reaching record levels in 2020 and 2021, when lockdown rules and COVID-19 restrictions made live broadcasts even more attractive to millions of people, the game streaming platforms started losing their momentum, causing their viewership to drop to the lowest point in years.
According to Stream Hatchet data, after hitting an all-time high of nearly 9 billion hours watched across all platforms, the global game streaming audience started falling in the third quarter of 2021 and continued doing so by the end of last year.
In Q1 2023, gamers and eSports fans spent 7.4 billion hours watching gaming titles on streaming platforms, or 1.5 billion hours less than in the same quarter a year ago.
One of the biggest drivers behind this substantial drop was Facebook Live’s 69% decline in viewership, which pushed the platform to third place behind the South Korean Afreeca TV, following the steep drop in viewership seen throughout last year.
Statistics show Twitch’s hours dropped by 10% year-over-year, while YouTube Live Gaming remained almost unchanged, with a less than 1% increase.
Twitch`s Market Share Increased 4% YoY, Facebook Live`s Dropped by Another 6%
Although the entire industry saw a considerable viewership drop last quarter, the two biggest live-streaming platforms continued to grow their market shares. The Stream Hatchet data showed Twitch`s market share increased 4% year-over-year and hit 74% in Q1 2023. YouTube Live Gaming, which now holds 15% of the game streaming market, grew by 2% in this period.
On the other hand, Facebook Live dropped to one-third of last year’s market share, falling from 9% to only 3% in the first quarter of 2023. AfreecaTV, which overtook the third-place position, had a 4% market share, or 1% more than in the same quarter a year ago.