Netflix’s Orange is the New Black still remains a force to be reckoned with in its sixth season. The first episode of Season 6, which premiered along with the rest of the season on July 27, scored 5.3 million viewers during its first three days, with 3.8 million of those viewers in the 18-49 demo.
That’s according to Nielsen’s SVOD Content Ratings, which measure U.S. viewing of Netflix shows that viewed on connected TV devices like Roku, Apple TV, video game consoles and smart TVs (which accounts for around 75 percent of overall SVOD viewing).
Of course, Netflix doesn’t sell ads, which means the 18-49 demo is irrelevant to that company, but the Nielsen numbers are still offer an illuminating comparison of how Netflix shows stack up against their broadcast and cable competition.
While that total viewing number for the first episode would have put Orange is the New Black in the top 10 among broadcast series that same week (behind only shows like America’s Got Talent, 60 Minutes, The Bachelorette, Big Brother and World of Dance), the demo number eclipsed anything on broadcast during the same time frame.
The top broadcast show in the demo the week of July 23 in live-plus-3 was the July 24 episode of America’s Got Talent, which had 3.4 million viewers 18-49.
Overall, Orange is the New Black’s sixth season averaged 2.6 million viewers per minute of show, with 73 percent of that audience coming in the 18-49 demo (1.9 million).
Nielsen said that 993,000 viewers made it through episode 13 of Orange is the New Black’s sixth season within the first three days, 705,000 of whom were adults 18-49.
While those numbers make Orange is the New Black one of the most-watched streaming series, especially among adults 18-49, Stranger Things remains Netflix’s most popular show since Nielsen launched its SVOD Content Ratings last fall: that series had the most-watched debut of any new Netflix series or movie in the last year, with 15.8 million people watching Season 2’s first episode within the first three days it was released.
In its recent Q1 2018 Total Audience Report, Nielsen found that 64 percent of U.S. TV homes have access to at least one of the three big SVOD services (Netflix, Hulu or Amazon).
Netflix now has 130 million subscribers worldwide, 57.4 million of which are in the U.S. The company maintains that Nielsen’s SVOD Content Ratings are “not accurate” and “does not reflect the viewing of these shows on Netflix.”