Americans Are Crazy For Digital Devices, Time Consumption Is Up

Americans own an average of four digital devices (including high-definition TVs) and spend 60 hours a week consuming media across them collectively.

“The number of digital devices and platforms available to today’s consumers has exploded in recent years. As a result, today’s consumer is more connected than ever, with more access to and deeper engagement with content and brands,” stated a Nielsen blog post today on its Digital Consumer report.

Among the key findings by category:

General device ownership and media consumption

-The majority of U.S. households now own high-definition televisions (83%), Internet-connected computers (80%) and smartphones (65%). Nearly half also own digital video recorders (49%) and gaming consoles (46%).

-Average monthly time spent using the browser and/or apps on their smartphones has also grown by nearly 10 hours, ranking second only to live television in the amount of time spent on media. Consumers have increased their monthly time spent viewing time-shifted TV content by almost two hours.

Second-screen activities

-84% of smartphone and tablet owners say they use their devices as second screens while watching TV. In addition to multitasking, they’re using smartphones and tablets to shop, look up TV show-related information and check sports scores, among other things. 

-Tablet owners are more likely to use their devices as a second screen for all of the activities examined -- with the exception of email/texting friends about the program.  

Social media activities

-Nearly two-thirds (64%) of overall social media users say they use social sites at least once a day on their computer, and almost half (47%) do so on smartphones. 

-More than half (56%) of adults ages 25-34 use social media at work. 

Mobile shopping activities

-More than four in five (87%) smartphone and tablet owners are using a mobile device for shopping activities
-Two-thirds of smartphone owners use their device to do price checks, and almost half (49%) use mobile coupons.

Hispanic connected consumers

-Latinos spend more time than the average U.S. consumer viewing video on digital devices, at more than eight hours watching online video each month -- over 90 minutes longer than the U.S. average.

-Hispanics are adopting smartphones at a higher rate than any other demographic group: nearly three in four Latinos own smartphones (72%), and half (49%) said they planned to upgrade/replace their smartphones in the next six months.

The information was compiled from various Nielsen reports, including its NetView, VideoCensus, and Mobile NetView panel data from the third quarter of 2013. TV-related data came from its national panel of TV homes and includes time-shifted viewing.

Nielsen said the Digital Consumer report is a combination of two previously separate studies: The Social Media Report and The U.S. Consumer Usage Report. It plans to issue the merged report annually. 

"Mobile devices" photo from Shutterstock.

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