YouTube generated $8.63 billion in advertising sales in the fourth quarter, a 25.4% year-over-year increase, beating analysts' consensus forecasts and surpassing the $7.71 billion in subscription revenue generated globally by Netflix in Q4.
Netflix was still the world's biggest revenue generator in video streaming last year, making $29.8 billion in sales in 2021 vs. $28.85 for YouTube.
YouTube's numbers don't reflect subscription revenue generated by virtual pay TV service YouTube TV, YouTube Music or YouTube Premium.
YouTube's figures were reported Tuesday during parent company Alphabet's fourth-quarter earnings report.
The fourth quarter actually marked a deceleration in growth sequentially for YouTube, which expanded its revenue by 43% in the third quarter of 2021.
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Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!