REPORT: Netflix Saves Children from 150 Hours of Commercials a Year

netflix children commercials

Services like Netflix save our kids from over 150 hours of ads for sugary cereal, rot-your-teeth soda, over-hyped toys, and more every year.

We get it, it’s really easy to drop an iPad into your kids’ hands and tell them to stream away, no judgement here. Nothing like a little peace and quiet while the young ones are in the back of the car watching ‘Puffin Rock’ for the 19th time, not speaking from experience here or anything…

But thinking back to our own childhoods, it was impossible to watch an episode of ‘Rugrats’ without being bombarded with several minutes of commercials for Cookie Crisp, Sock ’em Boppers, Creeper Crawlers, Gak, and more. And these days there are more commercials per half hour of television than ever.

While the nostalgic appreciation for these commercials might be painfully missed by future generations, we were curious to see just how many commercials services like Netflix are saving our children from each year.

Last year we ran the numbers on how Netflix saves us adults from 130 hours of commercials a year, and earlier this year, we reported that children between the ages of two and 18 are spending an average of 1.8 hours a day using streaming services.


That rounds out to about 650 hours of streaming TV and movies each year. According to Nielsen, every hour of TV has over 14 minutes of advertising. So if your kid was in front of a normal television broadcast for this period of time, they would have watched over 150 hours of commercials. 

That’s over six days a year being bombarded with ads for sugary cereal, rot-your-teeth soda, over-hyped toys and more. But thanks to streaming services like Netflix, our kids our spared from this onslaught.

Think about how much money this saves you as a parent as well. While there’s no denying an occasional advertisement will sneak through and convince a young, impressionable mind that they need their folks to buy them something, a Netflix subscription ends up paying for itself hundreds of times over if it prevents a few of those expensive toy purchases.

It will be interesting to monitor purchasing trends as these kids grow up. Will less exposure to advertisements alter the consumption habits among the next generation? Or will ad-free streaming options dominate?  In the long run we’ll see how much parents really care about exposing their children to this amount of advertising but now you’re aware of the actual numbers.

  • burnnnn

    I love it! I hate advertising, but understand how it pays for a lot of content. The thing is, people don’t like ads. So, media world, you better adapt, because WE have! We will go where the ads are not!