A new TV viewing study from media and marketing consultant Altman Vilandrie & Co. and online survey firm Research Now has found that just one-third of young adults 18-34 in the U.S. now watch TV shows during their normal broadcast time on a regular basis.
Their preference: on-demand services like Netflix and Hulu, where they can access programs and movies when and where they want.
The finding is in line with a broader study completed recently by Swedish tech firm Ericsson that found on-demand viewing was on the rise and viewing to scheduled TV programming was declining across 13 countries across Europe, Asia and North and South America.
But the Altman study also found that as viewers become more accustomed to controlling TV time, they also want more control over how they access programs. Increasingly, the device of choice is the smartphone.
Nearly half of young TV viewers say they would prefer their smartphone or other device over their remote to control their TV. Eleven percent of smartphone owners ages 18 to 34 watch TV shows and movies on a mobile phone daily, per the report.
"Instead of the age-old argument about who holds the TV remote, families will soon be squabbling over whose smartphone is controlling the TV," stated Altman Vilandrie & Co. director Jonathan Hurd, who oversaw the research project. "Consumers are removing the shackles of the traditional primetime TV lineup and creating their own personal networks of preferred programming and viewing times."
The study also found that 20% of consumers say they spend less on cable TV than they used to because online video meets their needs. This so-called "cord-shaving" is up 15% from last year, the survey found.
And 24% of 18-34s have "seriously considered" dropping cable service because online video meets their needs. However, only 3% to 4% of all consumers say they have actually "cut the cord" or cancelled their cable service because of online video.
Some 60% of 18-34 year-olds watch online videos at least once a week, the survey results showed.
Research Now fielded the online survey with more than 1,000 U.S. consumers in July.