Harry & Meghan beats The Crown in Netflix release date viewing figures

Harry & Meghan has beated The Crown for first day viewing figures on Netflix. (Netflix)
Harry & Meghan has beated The Crown for first day viewing figures on Netflix. (Netflix)

Netflix's headline-grabbing documentary Harry & Meghan has more than doubled the launch day viewing figures of royal rival The Crown.

The six-part series dropped its first three episodes on the streaming service on Thursday to much anticipation from viewers and royal commentators - and now the viewing figures from the first day it was available show that it was hugely more popular than Netflix's hit royal drama The Crown.

Read more: The 12 biggest revelations from Harry & Meghan Netflix documentary

Viewing figures from Barb have revealed that 2.4million people watched Harry & Meghan on its launch day, compared with 1.1million viewers for the launch day of season five of The Crown on 9 November.

Harry and Meghan (Netflix)
Harry & Meghan was hugely popular on its first day. (Netflix)

Netflix is new to sharing viewing figures through Barb, having only signed up to the industry measurement body in October.

The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan were under intense scrutiny on Thursday as royal commentators scrambled to watch as much of them as possible when they began streaming at 8am.

Many were surprised that the documentary has so far focussed on the couple's problems with the media, rather than their falling out with the Royal Family.

Read more: What does the Royal Family actually say about curtsying?

However, some have called into question the claims made, with BBC royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell and former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond both taking issue with comments from the couple.

Imelda Staunton stars in The Crown. (Netflix)
Imelda Staunton stars in The Crown. (Netflix)

Bond told Good Morning Britain: "He was very cheeky and I do take issue with him, I was quite annoyed at him, because he suggested that we are called royal correspondents by our newspapers or bosses simply so that there could be added credibility.

"He gave no cognisance to the fact that actually we're experienced, we study, we're trained and that's our speciality.

"So he just threw everyone into the same dung heap, basically, and his contempt for all of the media knows no bounds."

Poster art for Harry & Meghan. (Netflix)
Harry & Meghan drops its next three episodes next week. (Netflix)

Meanwhile, Witchell spoke to BBC News at Six about one scene from the documentary where Meghan claims: “But truth be told, no matter how hard I tried, no matter how good I was, no matter what I did, they were still going to find a way to destroy me.”

The royal commentator said: “First point, who is ‘they’ she is referring to, I think it is the Palace but, most particularly, it is to the press; but the idea that anyone was out to ‘destroy’ her, frankly, I think is absurd and simply does not stand up to proper and reasonable scrutiny.”

The Crown has also faced some controversy over whether storylines about the royals' lives are based in fact or not.

Its fifth season stars Imelda Staunton as the Queen, Dominic West as Charles and Elizabeth Debicki as Diana.

Harry & Meghan's first three episodes are currently streaming on Netflix, with the next three due to drop next week.

Watch: Jennie Bond says Prince Harry was 'very rude' about royal correspondents