Roku Streaming Hours Have Increased 50% in Last Year

(Image credit: Roku)

SAN JOSE, Calif.—Roku has shown the numbers to prove its budding popularity among consumers with its first quarter 2021 results, which saw an increase in its number of active accounts as well as the number of streaming hours those viewers accumulated in the quarter.

Like most streaming-related products, the Covid-19 pandemic has pushed more consumers to use Roku. At the end of Q1 2020, Roku had 39.8 million active accounts. At the end of Q1 2021 it had 53.6 million active accounts, up 35% year-over-year; 2.4 million accounts were added in Q1.

The amount of time these active accounts are spending watching content through Roku has also increased. Roku reports that its accounts saw 18.3 billion streaming hours in Q1 2021, up 49% from Q1 2020’s 12.3 billion.

This has helped Roku increase its revenue. The first quarter of 2021 generated $574.2 million in total net revenue, which was a 79% year-over-year increase from Q1 2020’s $320.8 million. However, Q1 2021 was down from total net revenue generated in Q4 2020, $649.9 million.

Helping to drive these numbers is the promotion and content push that streamers have been making on Roku to draw subscribers to their platforms. This includes the likes of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Discovery+, HBO Max and more. YouTube TV was absent from Roku’s list of content providers, as the two sides are currently in a dispute and Roku has removed YouTube TV from its channel store.

However, as the world begins to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic thanks to the rollout of vaccines, Roku acknowledges that its growth from the last year may slow down as a result. Roku says it is harder to project its growth for the second half of 2021, but expect things like account growth to be closer to 2019 levels than that of 2020.

“Our exceptional performance in Q1 2021 demonstrates how our business model serves consumers, content owners, and advertisers alike in the TV ecosystem,” Roku said in its Q1 2021 report. “Though there will be difficult Covid-19-related comparisons in 2021, we believe that the shift to streaming is inevitable. It will be global and will transform the way content is distributed and monetized.”

For more information, Roku’s full Q1 2021 financial report is available online