Nielsen reports US TV viewing at all time high in Q4 2008 – due to timeshifting; UK reports similar rise in viewing

As reported here in Variety, Nielsen is reporting record levels of TV viewing in the US for the fourth quarter of 2008. Apparently the average American over the age of 2 watched 151 hours of TV per month (that’s c.5 hours per day), up from 146 hours in same period 2007. The article notes

More watching of recorded TV explained some of the increase: that was up to 7 hours from 5 hours the year before. That included digital video recorders like the TiVo and “Start Over” features offered by some cable companies.

Among those who watch video on the Internet and on cell phones, the time spent viewing increased from the third quarter, but at much lower levels. The average user of Internet video spent two hours and 53 minutes on that per month, Nielsen said

In a separate report out Monday, Leichtman Research Group said only 1 percent of adults view recent TV shows online daily, and they’re no more likely to consider disconnecting their TV subscriptions.

Leichtman’s findings were based on a survey of 1,250 households last year.

The Leichtman study is summarised in a press release from the company here.

Meanwhile on February 10, the peak advertising industry body in the UK, the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, released its Q4 2008 Trends in Television report. The report notes average daily viewing in UK is almost 4 hours, the highest for Q4 since 2004.  Digital reception is at 86%, with ‘non-terrestrial channels’ gaining 40% viewing share. The full report is available to IPA subscribers.


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