Twitch Viewers Watch 12 Billion Minutes of Video Per Month

By Published January 17, 2014 at 1:32 am

As video game streaming takes off on a tear, we see the relatively new concept of watching others play games increase in its global domination. Twitch.tv, the most prolific game streaming service, recently announced its traffic and demographic statistics for 2013 in its annual review. Some of the stats are shocking -- although perhaps least surprising is the growth of MOBAs in popularity. Let's tear-down the stats.

Twitch is now in the top 300 websites in the world.

By the beginning of 2012, Twitch.tv had just barely broken into the top 3000 websites in the world (source); entering 2014, Twitch is presently ranked 223 in the US and 336 globally. Alexa is admittedly not the most accurate site analytics system, but given the volume that larger sites move, it's a fair estimate for a site like Twitch. For a website entirely dedicated to gaming and streaming, those stats are pretty damn impressive -- we have to keep in mind that the average internet user doesn't even understand the concept of watching gameplay (top sites still include Google and Facebook).

Similarly, Twitch's users tend to visit 5 pages per session -- quite a lot for any website -- up 7% over last year.

Twitch Statistics: Viewer Count Exceeds Most Traditional TV Networks 

According to Twitch's official internal metrics, here are the key stats you need to know about the network:

  • Minutes Watched Per Month: 12,000,000,000 (doubled over 2012).
  • Unique Viewers Per Month: 45,000,000 (doubled over 2012).
  • Total Streams Broadcast Per Month: 6,000,000 (again, doubled over 2012).

Additionally, the network notes that it now has 900,000 unique streamers per month - a 3x growth over the previous year. Of its total broadcasters, the website notes that 5100 have officially partnered with Twitch for ad serving.

On average, each viewer consumes 106 minutes of video content on Twitch daily.

twitch-stats2 twitch-stats1

The website further claims that "68% [of its audience] have decreased watching TV to focus their time on game entertainment." Twitch notes that its weekly viewer count exceeds those of Hulu, Vevo, and (not that this is impressive in any way) MTV; it further states that its thousands of prime-time viewers surpass traditional cable networks, like AMC, TNT, MTV, and SyFy.

Twitch Demographics: Average Age, Time Distribution on Site 

Twitch's core audience consists (average) of 21-year-old viewers, with a heavy skew (76%) between 18 and 49 years old. Twitch claims that a large portion of its demographic "hasn't subscribed to cable in years, if ever." Core usage stats include:

  • 58% of the website's total viewership reportedly dedicates 20+ hours per week on Twitch.
  • 25% of the total userbase broadcasts gameplay at some point.
  • 38% of the total userbase watches "video highlights" reels.
  • An impressive 61% of the users interact with stream chat.

twitch-stats3The most popular emoticons in Twitch chat.

Twitch Statistics: The Most Played & Popular Games on Twitch

Somewhat unsurprisingly, Minecraft and MOBAs have retained their explosive growth over the last year. Minecraft boasts 10,000 daily players broadcasting their gameplay, with one of the biggest events of the year (Nexus Minecraft Server launch) drawing 50,000 concurrent users. For comparison reasons, StarCraft 2's WCS Finals achieved over 150,000 concurrent viewers at its peak - one of the game's most popular events since its launch.

twitch-sc2-viewers

MOBAs are unarguably the single biggest draw to Twitch these days, although SC2 was largely responsible for kick-starting the website. League of Legends has grown over 250% in minutes consumed over the last year, with DOTA 2 laying claim to the largest gap-up in viewer count percentage, standing at 508% growth.

Twitch reports that StarCraft 2 shows "no sign of slowing down" (although that seems questionable) on the site and that WoW content consumption/creation continues to grow despite the game's population decline.

If you're interested in getting into streaming yourself, you can read about the hardware requirements of streaming in one of our previous high-end system builds. Note that this system is now deprecated (new hardware since its publication), but the core principles remain the same. Check our PC builds page for systems that are targeted for streaming.

Data source: Twitch.tv report.

- Steve "Lelldorianx" Burke.

Last modified on January 17, 2014 at 1:32 am
Steve Burke

Steve started GamersNexus back when it was just a cool name, and now it's grown into an expansive website with an overwhelming amount of features. He recalls his first difficult decision with GN's direction: "I didn't know whether or not I wanted 'Gamers' to have a possessive apostrophe -- I mean, grammatically it should, but I didn't like it in the name. It was ugly. I also had people who were typing apostrophes into the address bar - sigh. It made sense to just leave it as 'Gamers.'"

First world problems, Steve. First world problems.

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