×

‘House of Cards’ Viewing Soars on First Day of Season 2 (EXCLUSIVE)

Binge trend descends on Netflix drama shortly after its bow

House of Cards” is back, and it’s bigger than ever.

The drama series’ second season that Netflix made available early Friday is getting far more sampling than its first season did, according to data provided by broadband technology firm Procera Networks.

A whopping 15% of Netflix subscribers on one particular Internet service supplied by an unspecified U.S. cable operator (Procera can’t identify its clients) watched the first episode during a six to eight hour period monitored Friday. That’s a massive increase compared with a similar measurement Procera made last year when just 2% of “Cards” viewers watched at least one episode over the course of an entire weekend (and that bow was aided by a free-month discount to new subs).

While the Procera numbers aren’t an exact science, they’re all we’re going to get considering Netflix doesn’t divulge its own numbers and Nielsen Media doesn’t track the streaming service. Extrapolating the data to a total-audience figure is impossible (though Netflix content chief Ted Sarandos recently indicated that unspecified Netflix programming were amassing auds bigger than cable fare on Sunday nights).

In true Netflix fashion, viewers aren’t stopping at just one episode. As the data breakdown outlined below indicates, Netflix subs are showing healthy sampling across the first five episodes. (The final episodes don’t show any activity yet because it’s still quite early.) As with the first season, the entire second season was made available Friday.

Procera is also seeing similar usage surges for “Cards” in other territories where Netflix is active. Scandinavia, for instance, is seeing a 6% uptake.

The surge isn’t exactly a surprise; Netflix has made huge headway since the first-season premiere in establishing itself as a presence for original programming. However, the SVOD firm’s silent treatment to news media and rival networks looking for numbers makes it difficult to get any sense of how original content does vis-a-vis its library of licensed movies and TV episodes.

What the value of early data like this is to Netflix is questionable. While its execs repeatedly assert it makes no difference whether its subs watch one of its programs on its first or 1,000th day on the service because there’s no advertising on the streaming service, first-day measurements are undoubtedly a useful data point in making comparisons that could inform its overall programming strategy. Premiere-day numbers may even give Netflix an early indicator of how strong “Cards” could perform over the life of its run.

Netflix ended the fourth quarter of 2013 with 31.7 million U.S. subs.

Procera measures usage across the networks of six of the top 10 cable operators and three of the top 5 DSL operators in North America.

Episode Percentage Of Netflix Subs
Episode 01 15.70%
Episode 02 16.10%
Episode 03 10.60%
Episode 04 8.60%
Episode 05 3.60%
Episode 06 0.90%
Episode 07 0.60%
Episode 08 0.30%
Episode 09 0.20%
Episode 10 0.20%
Episode 11 0.10%
Episode 12 0.00%
Episode 13 0.00%

Note: Episode 2 likely has viewing patterns in excess of Episode 1 because Procera began measuring usage eight hours after the episodes premiered–and binge-viewers had probably already finished the first one.

More Digital

  • Vobile - ZEFR acquisition - Yangbin

    Zefr Sells Its Copyright-Flagging and YouTube Channel-Management Businesses to Vobile for $90 Million

    Vobile Group, a video protection and measurement company, announced a deal to acquire Zefr’s RightsID copyright-management and ChannelID YouTube channel-management businesses for about $90 million. According to the companies, Zefr’s RightsID and ChannelID together generated over $40 million in revenue in 2018 and were profitable. The deal stands to more than triple the revenue for [...]

  • Justin Connolly

    Disney Merges All Media Sales and TV Channel Distribution Under Justin Connolly

    Disney promoted Justin Connolly to the new role of president, media distribution, overseeing a single organization that combines all of the company’s media sales and TV channel distribution operations. Connolly previously served as EVP, affiliate sales and marketing, Disney and ESPN Media Networks. Based in New York, he will report to Kevin Mayer, chairman of [...]

  • NASA - International Space Station

    Hulu Is Getting NASA TV in Time for the Moon Landing Anniversary

    Hulu’s live TV service is getting NASA TV just in time for the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission. In addition to a live feed, which is available only to subscribers of Hulu’s live TV tier, Hulu is also gaining access to select NASA TV series on demand. The live TV deal was announced [...]

  • iheartmedia logo

    iHeartMedia Stock Drops in NASDAQ Debut

    Shares of iHeartMedia, the U.S.’s biggest radio network, fell as much as 7% after they commenced trading Thursday on the NASDAQ Global Select Market, and ended the day down around 3%. Last month, after exiting a year-long bankruptcy reorg, iHeartMedia announced it was approved for listing on NASDAQ, instead of pursuing an IPO. The company’s [...]

  • iHeartMedia-Pride-Media-TheOutcast-Logo

    iHeartMedia, Pride Media to Co-Produce Slate of LGBTQ+ Podcasts

    iHeartMedia is teaming with Pride Media, the media company whose brands include Out, The Advocate and Pride, to co-produce a slate of LGBTQ+ podcasts in 2019-20. The partnership will kick off with “The Outcast,” an iHeartRadio original podcast co-produced with Out Magazine. Hosted by Out Magazine deputy editor Fran Tirado, the weekly podcast will explore [...]

  • Netflix Reed Hastings

    Netflix Shares Dive After Q2 Stumble: Just a Hiccup or Sign of Bigger Trouble?

    Netflix badly undershot its subscriber forecasts for the second quarter of 2019 — posting its first net U.S. customer decline since 2011 while growth slowed considerably overseas. The company added 2.7 million subs worldwide, almost half as many as the 5 million it had projected. With the big miss, Netflix shares took a predictable hit, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content