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Ted Lasso was the most-watched original show in the US in 2023, despite Apple TV+ having the smallest user base

Published Jan 29th, 2024 9:35AM EST
Ted Lasso on Apple TV+
Image: Apple

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After three seasons, Ted Lasso ended in 2023. With its last season, it became the most-watched streaming original in the US last year, which is an outstanding record since Apple TV+ has the smallest user base compared to Netflix, Disney+, or Max.

According to Nielsen (via Deadline), this Apple TV+ original had 16.9 billion minutes watched in 2023, which was 2.5 billion more than the second place, Netflix’s The Night Agent. Interestingly, although it snuck to number 1 with consistently strong episodes from week-to-week, it only surpassed 1 billion minutes once, after the Season 3 finale debuted.

“It was people coming back, not necessarily watching a huge amount at a time,” Brian Fuhrer, Nielsen’s SVP of Product Strategy, told Deadline.

Fuhrer says that Ted Lasso’s 76-minute finale also helped increase this number. Comparatively, Suits was the most-streamed title of the year in the US, with up to 57.7 billion viewing minutes. The report explains that getting licensed content is a huge part of Netflix’s success, as it was able to snag eight of the nine seasons of Suits. NCIS and Grey’s Anatomy are the top two and three most-watched shows.

“Originals are sprinters, like Usain Bolt getting that quick run, and the acquired titles are more distance runners,” Fuhrer explained.

Apple TV+ was launched in November 2019. Since then, Apple Original films, documentaries, and series have been honored with 452 wins and 2,057 award nominations and counting, including multi-Emmy Award-winning comedy Ted Lasso and historic Oscar Best Picture winner CODA.

Other reports already suggested that despite having a smaller library and fewer subscribers, Apple TV+ offers the best content in a streaming service. Even though the company recently raised prices, the service is also one of the cheapest, especially considering the Apple One bundle, which includes Apple Music, Apple Arcade, and iCloud storage.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.