TV Set Viewing Drops While Device Viewing Rises

TV may not be going away, but the TV set itself is on the decline. Slowly but surely, TV viewing is rising on other devices and dipping on TV sets, according to a new study from global research firm Accenture.

Consumers are increasingly watching TV programming on smartphones, tablets, mobile devices, and laptops. Meanwhile, TV screen usage saw a double digit decline in the past year.

Specifically, viewership of movies and TV shows on TV screens dropped 13% worldwide and 11% in the United States in the last year, the study said. Even that TV stalwart, sports programming, took a hit. Sports viewing on TV screens fell 10% worldwide last year and 9% in the United States. The study was conducted last fall with 24,000 consumers in 24 countries.

The rate of change is most pronounced among young consumers. The study found that viewers age 14 to 17 had moved away from TV sets for viewing of movies and TV shows at a 33% decline. Viewership among those 18 to 34 fell 14%. For those 35 to 54, the drop was 11% last year. 

Accenture said that consumers are viewing TV shows and movies on all kinds of mobile devices because of improvements in streaming video quality as well as longer battery life of mobile devices, the study found. However, some consumers say that online video streaming is still not of the highest quality, underscoring the need for continued tech advancements in this area.
Amidst all these changes, one constant remains: consumers still like to watch video content. A separate study from Emarketer found that U.S. adults will spend about 5 hours and 31 minutes watching video content on TV and digital devices each day this year. Consumption of video on digital devices alone will average about 1 hour and 16 minutes per day, compared with only 21 minutes per day in 2011.

7 comments about "TV Set Viewing Drops While Device Viewing Rises ".
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  1. Leonard Zachary from T___n__, April 21, 2015 at 4:08 p.m.

    Major Broadcast Televsion, specifically ad supported linear TV collared with Retransmission Fee perpetual Growth needs to reinvent its delivery platform and product. Who amongst the Broadcasters will innovate? Who amongst the Broadcasters understand Today's Audiences? Who beleives Large Advertisers will stand pat on TV Ad budgets? Who?

  2. Thomas Lucido from Twelvefold Media, April 21, 2015 at 4:23 p.m.

    Which is why we were so surprised to see that HBO Now only generated a brief amount of buzz.

  3. Steve Sternberg from The Sternberg Report, April 21, 2015 at 4:31 p.m.

    Read my column in yesterday's MediaPost titled, "Traditional Television Viewing Continues to Grow" before taking these types of studies at face value. 

  4. Claudio Marcus from FreeWheel, April 21, 2015 at 5:21 p.m.

    Ditto what Steve said ( The Methodology for the Accenture study is research conducted online with 24,000 consumers in 24 countries with the sample size in each country representative of the online population. The survey polled respondents about their usage, attitudes and expectations related to digital device ownership, content consumption, broadband constraints, digital trust and the Internet of Things. In other words, this is based on online survey data NOT the actual consumption habits of the individuals in question, and as acknowledged, they are members of the online population, not likely representative of the broader population.



  5. Suzanne Sell from Independent, April 22, 2015 at 4:27 p.m.

    ***SIGH*** I spend half of my working hours debunking studies like this one. This is the third one in the past week.

  6. Melanie Kaupke from ASU, April 22, 2015 at 9:56 p.m.

    As a 26 year old college student, I ditched cable over a year ago. I think a lot of this decline is due to the ridiculously high prices that cable companies are trying to get away with. I have a hulu and a netflix subscription, so between the 2, I only had to give up 3 shows I typically watched on a cable station that isnt on either of those subscriptions. Even so, while I do occasionally watch things on my computer and iphone when I am out of the house, I typically do all my hulu and netflix watching on my TV through appletv. So I guess I can't say this does surprise me all that much, since people can access alternative tv watching programs through just about any device, I am surprised mroe people dont hook it up and stream from their tv. 

  7. Nicholas Schiavone from Nicholas P. Schiavone, LLC, April 23, 2015 at 12:57 p.m.

    Dear Ms. Whitney,

    I know you’re well-intentioned, but just how many idiotic stories like this must MediaPost run?

    First, I recommend today's (April 24) BBC story on the avoidance of stupidity be circulated among the news, blog and editorial staff ASAP.  Seriously!

    • "How to not be stupid – a five-step guide to cracking down on cognitive bias"

    • Even the smartest people can be fools.   David Robson explains how to avoid the most common traps of sloppy thinking.



    Second, I recommend that MediaPost republish the first-rate Commentary:

    • “Traditional Television Viewing Continues To Grow” by Steve Sternberg (April 20).

    • continues-to-grow.html

    I don't carry a brief for Nielsen, but to report on US TV Usage and Viewing behavior without referencing a Nielsen Rating, is like reporting on Ben Affleck’s Ancestry for PBS' “Finding Your Roots” without consulting a Harvard Professor like Henry Louis Gates, Jr.


    Nicholas P. Schiavone

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