- Netflix lost 126,000 subscribers in the US during the second quarter, the company said in its Q2 earnings report on Wednesday.
- It significantly missed projections for subscriber growth overall, adding just 2.7 million.
- It’s the first time Netflix has lost subscribers in a quarter in the US since 2011.
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Netflix lost 126,000 subscribers in the US in the second quarter of 2019, the company said in its Q2 earnings report on Wednesday.
It’s the first time Netflix has lost subscribers in a quarter in the US since 2011, when it tried a disastrous brand split effort with “Qwikster” and raised prices (it ended up losing 800,000 subscribers in one quarter).
Netflix gained 1.7 million US subscribers in the first quarter of this year, and 670,000 US subscribers in the second quarter of 2018 (Q2 tends to be slower for Netflix because of its content release schedule).
Overall this quarter, Netflix added 2.7 million total paid subscribers worldwide, significantly missing its forecast of 5 million.
The subscriber losses in the US are a sign that the service’s domestic growth could be slowing as more companies enter the streaming game with their own platforms and pull licensed content from Netflix.
Consulting firm PwC said in a report last month that Netflix could be “nearing its peak subscriber point in the US.”
“The first-mover advantage in streaming video that Netflix has capitalized on to date continues to be eroded, as the industry begins to fragment, with more and more companies entering the market, from pay-TV heavyweights to specialized, niche players,” PwC said.
But Netflix pushed back against that narrative strain in its earnings report.
“While our US paid membership was essentially flat in Q2, we expect it to return to more typical growth in Q3, and are seeing that in these early weeks of Q3,” Netflix said.
Netflix also said it didn’t “believe competition was a factor” in its subscriber shortfall this quarter, since there “wasn’t a material change in the competitive landscape during Q2.”