Advanced Television

UK programmes majority of EU TV content on Netflix, iTunes

June 14, 2017

The main European countries of origin for EU 28 TV content in Netflix’s catalogues are the UK with 160 titles (or 44 per cent of the total EU28 TV titles available in the 8 Netflix catalogues studied), France with 72 titles (20 per cent) and Germany with 52 titles (14 per cent). Together, these three countries produce 78 per cent of EU 28 TV titles in the 8 catalogues studied, according to a study from the European Audiovisual Observatory

For iTunes, these 3 countries produce 91.5 per cent of all EU titles in the 3 iTunes catalogues studied, with UK produced TV titles representing 52 per cent (884 titles), German produced titles representing 22 per cent (365 titles) and French titles 17 per cent (297 titles).

The differences in the catalogues are more visible when national content is taken into account: iTunes offers a much higher share of national TV content than Netflix. The use of the iTunes platform for national broadcasters and right holders to monetise their TV content could explain this difference combined with the difference in business models. Netflix has to “buy” the rights for each TV programme whereas iTunes doesn’t, thus enabling it to offer a larger quantity.

Regarding US TV content, the share of the two services are much more closer; between Netflix and iTunes offer respectively 48 per cent and 42 per cent of US TV content when titles are counted, 56 per cent and 50 per cent when seasons are taken into account and finally 60 per cent and 55 per cent respectively when episodes are counted. This reflects the fact that US scripted TV series included in the two catalogues last for longer seasons with more episodes.

Most successful genres on Netflix and Apple’s iTunes

The genres which seem to work (read: circulate the widest on these two services) the best for EU TV programmes are children animation series (the German Die Schule der kleinen Vampire, the French Mouk, the Spanish Suckers, the Italian PopPixie or the Finnish Angry Birds) and scripted crime and drama TV series (such as the UK’s thriller series Luther and Peaky Blinders, the Swedish The Killing or the French Au service de la France). Another genre of TV programmes well represented in the top lists is TV documentaries (such as the BBC’s Africa, the French Vu du Ciel or the German Gehemnisse des Zweiten Weltkriegs). The data sets available in this free report show that UK, French, Danish and Swedish TV programmes dominate the EU top list of TV programmes.


The share of TV content on Netflix and iTunes is measured in 3 ways: on a title basis, on a season basis and on an episode basis. Regarding EU 28 TV content, the impact of the measurement chosen is important. On a title basis, the EU content offered in 8 Netflix catalogues ranges from 39 per cent in Germany to 27 per cent in Denmark  On a season basis, EU content ranges from 34 per cent in the UK to 24 per cent in the Netherlands. On an episode basis, the share drops further, ranging from 26 per cent in Germany to 17 per cent in Denmark. For the three country catalogues of iTunes the share varies from 52 per cent in Germany to 43 per cent in the United Kingdom when titles are considered. When seasons are taken into account, the percentage range falls to 41 per cent in France to 39 per cent in the UK. When episodes are taken into account, the shares drop furthermore to 35 per cent in France to 28 per cent in Germany

The TV content offered in the catalogues studied is largely scripted TV series but not only. For European TV content, several TV documentaries, children’s animation TV series, TV fiction films and TV mini-series are also on offer. For US content, unscripted TV shows (reality TV shows) are not uncommon in iTunes catalogues.




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