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TV By the Numbers: NBA Still King, Oscars Crack Top 20

Patrick Williams #44 of the Chicago Bulls dunks against the Charlotte Hornets at the United Center on April 22, 2021 in Chicago.
(Image credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

This is a quick snapshot of TV by the numbers for the week of April 19-25, revealing the most-watched shows and networks using glass-level data from Vizio’s Inscape, and the top shows and networks by TV ad impressions with insights via iSpot.tv.

Most-Watched Shows and Networks

Via Inscape, Vizio’s TV data product with glass-level insights from a panel of more than 17 million active and opted-in smart TVs. Data is linear, live TV only and includes all episode types (new and reruns). Rankings are by percent share duration (i.e., time spent watching).

The top of the show ranking was steady week-over-week, with NBA again taking first place with 1.40% of all minutes watched, an increase from the previous week’s 1.26% share duration. MLB baseball games also scored more watch-time, 0.83% vs. 0.80% the week before. The Oscars snagged No. 15 (0.45%), while The Big Bang Theory jumped into 18th place from No. 26 the previous week. NCIS, which wasn’t in the top 50 before, came in at No. 21 with 0.39% of all minutes watched.

Most-watched shows on TV by percent share duration for April 19 -25.

ABC took the top spot for the second week in a row, capturing 6.85% of watch-time, while NBC jumped into second with 6.77% and Fox grabbed fourth (4.41%). TNT was another network that marched up the chart, moving into 11th place from No. 18, thanks in part to NBA basketball games and reruns of NCIS: New Orleans. The Discovery Channel also had a notable upswing, from No. 27 to No. 22; on the flip side, ION dropped from No. 11 to No. 19 week-over-week.

Most-watched networks on TV by percent share duration for April 19 -25.

Top Shows and Networks by TV Ad Impressions

Via iSpot.tv, the always-on TV ad measurement and attribution company. Rankings are by TV ad impressions, for new episodes only. 

NBA basketball remains king of TV ad impressions, with games generating nearly 1.3 billion impressions during the week. MLB baseball moved up the ranking, with its 638.9 million impressions constituting a 6.78% week-over-week increase. Elsewhere in the sports world, PGA Tour Golf had an 18.3% decrease in impressions, while NASCAR Cup Series jumped into the ranking with 382.4 million impressions. The Oscars made the cut as well, coming in at No. 20 with 337.3 million TV ad impressions.

Top shows by TV ad impressions for April 19-25.

CBS continues to be a TV ad impression powerhouse, although it saw a 14.01% week-over-week decrease in impressions. MSNBC surpassed CNN to move up one position in the ranking, taking fifth place with 2.5 billion impressions. MLB Network saw a week-over-week increase, up to 945.3 million impressions from 786.6 the previous week. A&E was a newcomer to the ranking, coming in at No. 24 with 297 million impressions, fueled in part by Biography: "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, The First 48 and Hoarders.

Top networks by TV ad impressions April 19-25.