YouTube was more popular than BBC iPlayer in the UK in 2019

It's the first time in more than three years that the video sharing site was able to overtake the BBC's catch-up service

KSI v Logan Paul live stream and TV channel

Video sharing website YouTube attracted more viewers than BBC iPlayer in the UK in 2019, according to research by media firm Ampere Analysis.

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During the third quarter of 2019 (July-September), they found that 57 per cent of internet users had watched a YouTube video in the past month, whereas only 55 per cent had watched a programme on iPlayer.

YouTube hasn’t overtaken BBC iPlayer since the first quarter of 2016 almost four years ago, meaning this is a big achievement for the website that could point to new emerging trends.

Minal Modha, Consumer Research Lead at Ampere Analysis, said: “The strength of short-form video is evident in YouTube’s dominant position as the most viewed in each market surveyed outside of China. Looking at the top 5, three of them are social video platforms which highlights its importance in the viewing mix for consumers.”

In the same study, 70 per cent of internet users had watched a video on Facebook in the past month, a growth of four per cent on the same period in 2018.

This could be a sign that audiences are increasingly gravitating towards bitesize content, although the continued dominance of Netflix suggests that there remains a huge interest in longer programming. The juggernaut streamer is the second most-watched service in the world, behind YouTube.

YouTube has had a particularly big year in 2019, with the likes of KSI and Logan Paul branching out into hugely lucrative boxing events, while established stars like Will Smith have also made themselves a big presence on the platform.

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BBC iPlayer has also been very popular, achieving over 40 million requests for Killing Eve alone, with several other shows also attracting millions of viewers.