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Baby bingers: a third of British 3 to 4-year-olds now watch Netflix and other streaming services

An Ofcom report on children’s media use also found that children are increasingly looking to YouTube for viewing content

Published: Thursday, 7th February 2019 at 2:55 pm

One third of British three to four-year-olds are now watching Netflix and other streaming services, a report by Ofcom has revealed.


According to the study, 32 per cent of children aged between three and four in the UK used services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and NOW TV in 2018.

This figure increases to half (49%) of all five to 15-year-olds.

Online streaming services have widely committed to children’s content. On Netflix, users are able to create an individual profile for their child, while NOW TV offers a monthly kids pass and Amazon Prime Video has a whole section of TV and movies aimed at children.

In 2017, it was reported that one Netflix UK user watched the Bee Movie no less than 357 times in one year. The viewer was later revealed to be a young boy who became transfixed by the movie at only a few weeks old.

Ofcom’s recent report also found that for the first time, children aged between eight and 11 have joined 12 to 15-year-olds in spending more time on the internet than watching TV on a television set.

YouTube is singled out as a platform which is increasingly popular with British children, with half of eight to 15-year-olds preferring to watch YouTube content rather than TV programmes on a television set.

This figure has increased considerably between 2017 and 2018, from 14% to 49% for eight to 11-year-olds and from 16% to 49% for 12 to 15-year-olds.

Compared to 2017, children aged between three and 15 were more likely to watch vloggers on YouTube in 2018, with the most significant rise coming from 12 to 15-year olds – from 40% to 52%.


For younger children, “unboxing videos” – clips of people unwrapping presents and toys – were particularly popular. The Ofcom report found that close to half of three to four-year-olds (45%) have used YouTube.


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