Commentary

The Future of TV is Now

According to the Ericsson ConsumerLab, based on interviews with 100,000 individuals each year in more than 40 countries, representing the views of 1.1 billion people, through quantitative and qualitative research, the future of TV is now. The evolution of TV and video habits has meant that traditional user groups, such as the TV Couch Traditionalists, have shrunk by more than 30% since 2010, in favor of user groups such as the Mobility Centric and Screen Shifters.

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TV Couch Traditionalists and Screen Shifters spend the most on paid scheduled linear TV services today, while the Mobility Centrics, TV Zeros and Average TV Joes spend significantly less. Additionally, Screen Shifters and Mobility Centrics pay significantly more for VOD services than ever before. The consumers of tomorrow will require more to be satisfied, says the report, but it is a task that is well worth doing because their love for TV and video content will continue to grow in the future, concludes the report.

Total TV and video viewing time increases through massive growth in mobile viewing, says the report:

  • Since 2012, the average consumer globally has increased their viewing on mobile devices by 4 hours a week, while their fixed screen viewing has declined by 2.5 hours a week. This means that today they spend an extra 1.5 hours watching TV and video than they did 4 years ago
  • In the US, 20% of the increased mobile viewing is paid-for premium content

Consumers’ mobile viewing habits thrive with the perception of unlimited video streaming:

  • 40% of consumers globally are very interested in a mobile data plan that includes unlimited video streaming capabilities. At 46%, millennials are the group most interested, as they typically use multiple on-demand services and appreciate mobility

Scheduled linear TV viewing suffers when millennials go all-in with streamed user generated content (UGC):

  • Consumers aged 16-34 spend almost 2.5 hours more each week watching streamed on-demand UGC, compared to 35-69 year olds. At the same time, they spend almost four hours less than the older population when it comes to watching live and linear broadcast content

Consumers in the US spend 45% more time choosing what to watch on video on demand (VOD) services than scheduled linear TV services, yet they rate VOD services higher:

  • In fact, 63% of consumers are very satisfied with content discovery in their VOD service, while only 51% say the same for their scheduled linear TV provider
  • The time-consuming discovery process can be frustrating, yet it is acceptable because VOD enables consumers to find content they want to watch, when they want to watch it

Consumer spending on VOD services in the US has increased by over 60% in just a few years:

  • Over a period of 4 years, consumers say they have increased their VOD spending from an average of USD 13 to USD 20 per month
  • Paid scheduled linear TV services continue to account for about half of the average household media spending in the US. While the average household uses 1.3 scheduled linear TV services, it also uses 3.8 VOD services

Since 2010, internet-based video content and social media have proliferated and are today competing with scheduled linear TV content for the consumer’s attention. But the study shows that scheduled TV also has an important role in tomorrow’s increasingly complex media environment. Scheduled linear TV services continue to attract consumers through a shared social experience, relaxing lean-back viewing and instant access to live content. But consumers also appreciate and expect the option of media à la carte, the ability to create their own world of entertainment.

UGC (User Generated Content) that is either on-demand or live introduces new, exciting possibilities for consumers and producers of such content. UGC is increasingly appealing to many, and younger consumers in particular, says the report. Today 16-34 year olds spend almost 2.5 hours more each week watching streamed on-demand UGC than 35-69 year olds. At the same time, 16-34 year olds spend almost four hours less than 35-69 year olds when it comes to watching live and linear broadcasted content. To a large extent, millennials today watch UGC whereas those aged 35-69 spend their time on live and linear TV.

The viewing traditions of TV and media consumers are clearly changing, with the media industry introducing new types of content and formats. Just as the preferences for how to watch TV and video content are changing, so is when and through which screen the content is viewed

Please visit the Ericsson ComputerLab for additional information

 

 

 

1 comment about "The Future of TV is Now".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, November 17, 2016 at 10:37 a.m.

    Jack, as we have been discussing time and time again, what people say in surveys of this sort and what they actually do in terms of volumetrics--- measured by impartial electronic meters--- are two quite different things. While there is some movement to mobile and digital, generally, it is not of the staggering proportions that some would have us believe. Also, respondents tend to jump on percieved image enhancing bandwagons---in this case the "trend" to digital viewing----as this positions them as more "with it" and intelligent respondents to the researchers. So, by all means, look at the data as suggesting directions of behavior that are evolving----but don't take the findings literally.

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