Data Reveals VOD Cutting Into Linear TV Viewing

Total average cross-platform television viewing times in the United States and European markets are declining as consumption of non-linear content — long-form video in particular — continues to grow, according to new IHS Markit data.

Excluding social media, total average daily video viewing time peaked at 284.3 minutes per person in 2013, when linear viewing had an 87% share of total viewing. By 2018, linear’s share had declined to 67%, and total average viewing time per person per day was down to 273.7 minutes, according to an Advanced Television report on the IHS data.

“During previous years, non-linear television viewing was largely additive to traditional linear TV viewing, driving up the total number of minutes watched,” Rob Moyser, research analyst at IHS Markit, stated. “However, non-linear now has become an alternative for linear TV for many consumers. As a result, total cross-platform viewing time is returning to levels seen prior to the rise of on-demand viewing.”

Long-form video, typically defined as 15 minutes or longer, is the non-linear format showing the most growth: Average viewing times showed a year-over-year increase of six minutes per person, per day in 2018.

Long-form viewing times increased across the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands, driven primarily by the increasing popularity of Netflix and other VOD services, according to IHS.

Total cross-platform viewing times do show growth when social video is included, indicating that social video probably isn’t cannibalizing linear TV viewing, the researcher indicates.

When video viewing on Facebook, Instagram and other platforms is included, total average video-viewing times in 2018 for the markets analyzed rose to 303 minutes per person per day, compared to 299 in 2017.


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