#1 Network Has Reached Over 210 Million Unique Viewers This Season

Across All Dayparts

Streaming of CBS Network Content Is Up +50% Over Last Year

CBS will finish the 2020-2021 season as “America’s Most-Watched Network” in prime time for the 13th straight season with a lead of nearly +1 million viewers. This will be the Network’s 18th win in the last 19 years. CBS is also #1 in late night for the fifth consecutive season and in daytime for 35 consecutive years.

The Network’s winning season features the top broadcast (SUPER BOWL LV), the top series/drama (THE EQUALIZER), top comedy (YOUNG SHELDON), top news program (60 MINUTES) and top prime time special (OPRAH WITH MEGHAN AND HARRY).

CBS is currently averaging 6.26 million viewers, nearly +1 million viewers, or +16% ahead of second-place NBC (versus 5.39m), +32% ahead of ABC (4.76m) and +45% ahead of Fox (4.33m). The Network is also #1 in adults 25-54 (1.4, tie). Finally, CBS is the only network up for the season in adults 18-49 (1.0 from 0.9, +11%) and is up in adults 18-34 (0.6 from 0.5, +20%). All numbers are according to Nielsen most current ratings through Sunday, April 25.

According to Nielsen NPower (6+ minute qualifier), top-ranked CBS has reached over 210 million unique viewers this season across all dayparts, beating its closest competitor (NBC with 199.8 million by +5%).

“In a season complicated by production delays and scheduling interruptions, it feels very gratifying to deliver another winning schedule, launch television’s biggest new hit and broadcast one of the most memorable prime time events in recent years,” said Kelly Kahl, President, CBS Entertainment. “The performance of our amazing, premium quality series continues to dominate the network landscape, while adding valuable reach through the company’s many digital offerings.”

In addition to its broadcast strength, streaming of CBS Network has grown +50% year-to-date across all digital platforms where CBS content appears – which includes CBS.com, the CBS app, Paramount+ (ViacomCBS’ new streaming service), and channels on Pluto TV and YouTube. The new CBS app has more than 4.5 million downloads since it launched in March 2021.

“From the Super Bowl to THE EQUALIZER to OPRAH, and even the weekly editions of NCIS and FBI and 60 MINUTES, the scale and reach of CBS programming was on full display this year,” said CBS Entertainment Group’s Chief Research and Analytics Officer Radha Subramanyam. “Even with the considerable challenges that this season presented, the overall content consumption of CBS Network programming is in line with last year when you consider the impressive digital growth.”

The following are some key highlights of CBS’ winning 2020-2021 season:

Genre leadership

  • THE EQUALIZER is the top scripted series, top drama, top new series and top series among African American viewers.

  • 60 MINUTES is the #1 news program.

  • UNITED STATES OF AL is #1 new comedy.

  • OPRAH WITH MEGHAN AND HARRY delivered the largest US primetime audience for any entertainment special in more than a year – more than 27 million viewers. The special was also a global phenomenon, attracting more than 70 million viewers worldwide.

  • CBS has the top seven comedies – more than the other networks combined. In fact, CBS has had the top comedy since the final season of “Friends” – the past 17 years.

  • CBS has the top three dramas (and top three entertainment programs) on broadcast television – THE EQUALIZER, NCIS and FBI.

Schedule strength

  • CBS has incredible depth with 10 of the top 30 “most-watched” broadcast series.

  • Five CBS series are averaging 10+ million viewers, more than all the other networks combined – THE EQUALIZER, NCIS, FBI, 60 MINUTES and BLUE BLOODS.

  • CBS has 12 time-period-winning programs, more than all other networks combined.

Late Night

  • In Late Night, the Network has been #1 in the daypart with Stephen Colbert and James Corden for four consecutive seasons. THE LATE SHOW with STEPHEN COLBERT is the only late-night program to average over 3 million viewers (3.02m), beating its closest competitor by +72% (versus 1.76 million viewers) and dominating its time period for the past five years.


  • In Daytime, CBS has the top program (THE PRICE IS RIGHT) and the top daytime drama (THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS). The Network has been #1 in the daypart for 35 consecutive seasons.

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Press Contacts:

Scott Grogin



Phil Gonzales