Live TV Losing Younger Adults

Web users ages 18 to 35 spend nearly a quarter of viewing time online

As timeshifting and web viewing have both increased in importance in recent years, live TV has generally lost out to what viewers consider more convenient media. According to a report from market researcher Morpace, nearly three in five US consumers watch at least some video on a device other than a television.

Further, Morpace found 52% of total TV viewing time consisted of live TV. Among younger adults ages 18 to 34, that proportion fell to 41%. Adults 55 and up watched live TV almost two-thirds of the time, but even Gen Xers and younger boomers were evenly split between live TV and several timeshifting methods.

 Online was the most popular alternative to live TV, with about half of consumers using some online source for viewing video content, and a further 23% using a streaming video service like the one offered by Netflix, which can allow viewing on a computer, iPad or TV.

Adults ages 18 to 34 were more likely to use either online video format than older consumers, though their consumption of video from DVDs or DVRs was similar.

 A February 2010 study by Retrevo found adults under 25 were heavily involved in online video, with 29% saying they watched all or most of their TV on the web.

eMarketer estimates that about 85% of 18-to-34-year-old internet users watch online video at least once a month, but that includes both long-form professional content like television shows as well as short user-generated clips. Among older internet users, penetration is much lower; fewer than 44% of 55- to 64-year-olds and fewer than 26% of seniors 65 and up watch online video monthly.

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  1. jesse — November 12, 2014 @ 4:07 am

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