Wi-Fi Powers iPad, iPhone Video Viewing

When it comes to watching full-length TV episodes, virtually all iPad users and more than half (55%) of iPhone users rely on Wi-Fi connections rather than wireless networks. By contrast, only 35% of Android (smartphone) users are viewing their favorite shows via Wi-Fi, according to the latest data from mobile video ad network Rhythm New Media.

The heavy reliance on Wi-Fi by iPad users likely reflects the tendency toward more in-home use of tablets, which now account for 40% of overall video viewing on the Rhythm network.

The company's third-quarter metrics report also showed differences among iOS and Android devices in relation to in-stream ad completion rates.

Android smartphones led the way, with a 91% completion rate, followed closely by the iPod touch (88%), iPad (84%) and iPhone (81%). While the differences are not that significant, one might expect the iPad to have the highest rate as a result of having a larger screen and higher resolution than a typical smartphone or iPod.



The average completion rate for Rhythm -- which serves programming on mobile from CBS' TV.com, CW and Sony's Crackle -- was 87%, the same as the prior two quarters. Interactive pre-roll video ads, which automatically play when an app is launched or in between game levels, had a 27% completion rate when run in premium medium properties. The average pre-roll rate was 17.9% 

In comparing when people watch video on the iPad and smartphone, the study found that viewership on the Apple tablet was slightly higher in the evening. Viewing on the iPad peaked at 9 p.m., when almost 6% of overall daily usage took place on the device. Smartphone viewing peaked at 1 p.m., with a bit of a spike as people catch up on TV shows during lunch. 

Entertainment remained the top ad category on the Rhythm network, representing more than 20% of total campaigns in the third quarter, followed by CPG (15%), “Other,” (12%) and tech (10%).

The report also showed that contextually relevant full-page ads running in entertainment properties had a 7.7% engagement rate compared to a 5.6% rate for ads on average against entertainment content.

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