TV Networks Record Higher Usage As Virus Forces People Indoors

There are strong expectations that all types of TV viewing -- in all dayparts -- will rise, given the number of U.S. viewers staying at home due to coronavirus issues. Broadcast TV networks witnessed some higher results in the most current week.

Four top broadcast networks totaled 18.1 million Nielsen-measure viewers when looking at prime-time live program/plus same day for the most recent week ending March 15 -- versus 16.9 million the week before.

This past week, CBS led with 6.17 million; ABC is next at 5.15 million, NBC, at 3.71 million and Fox, 3.02 million.

The week before, CBS was at 6.8 million; ABC, 6.1 million; NBC, 2.3 million; and Fox, 1.7 million.

All these numbers are down versus current season-to-date data: CBS, 7.77 million through March 15; Fox, 7.13 million; NBC, 6.97 million; and ABC, 5.53 million.

Many networks have recently announced sharply higher TV rerun programming on prime-time schedules, as well as a wave of postponements/shutdowns of TV production of new episodes from existing series.

Nielsen has predicted a 60% rise in all TV consumption due to anticipated longer-term effects of coronavirus with workers staying at home to avoid infection.



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