TV Watchers: Paid TV Beats Free


Motorola Mobility, a subsidiary of the big maker of cable set-top boxes, says consumers prefer paid television programming -- cable, satellite or the Internet -- to free TV/video services.

Trumpeting an independent global study, 57% of people want pay TV services -- although in 67% of those markets, consumers can get free-to-air TV services.

The study adds that 42% of viewers have had an email, instant message or social-network interaction while watching a program -- often to talk about that specific TV program. Of this group, 22% says social media is a regular multitasking effort; and 61% would pay more for a TV service that offered this connection.

Concerning HDTV, 75% of viewers say they either own or would pay to get a HD television set in the next 18 months; 25% are looking to upgrade their TVs to include 3D sets.



Bill Ogle, chief marketing officer of Motorola Mobility, stated: "As we advance further into the Internet era of TV, the ability for service providers to differentiate their offers will become even more crucial as consumers look for extra value from their subscriptions."

But free TV/video content has its place. Per the study, more than 66% of consumers said it was important to access free content on devices other than the main TV set in the home. Only 39% said it was important to access paid TV content on devices other than the TV set. Motorola Mobility says this suggests that the main TV set will continue to be of value for a long time.

Globally, social interaction and TV viewing don't always go hand-in-hand. China, the United Arab Emirates and Russia are high multitaskers. But Japanese, Germans and Nordic viewers are the least likely to chat, use instant messaging or a platform like Twitter or Facebook.

Shopping via television is of interest to 42% of viewers globally, chat is at 30%; updating a social media site is at 27%; Twitter usage is at 17%.

North American and Japanese viewers watch the most TV/video per week, at 21 hours. South Koreans watch the least, at 13 hours. The global average amount of TV/video watching is 17 hours.

The study, "Motorola Mobility's Media Engagement Barometer," is a research project that examines 7,500 consumers across 13 markets: Australia, China, France, Germany, Japan, Nordics, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, the U.K. and the U.S. The research was conducted on behalf of Motorola by Vanson Bourne, an independent agency.

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