Advanced Television

Screen time still grows

July 7, 2008

The first in a series of new 'three-screen' reports by Nielsen shows an emerging shift toward a more video-centric use of the Internet, but not at the expense of television viewing. The report is an effort by Nielsen to “follow the video” as consumer viewing habits shift.

The average American spent 127 hours of time with TV in May, up from 121 hours in May 2007; and 26 hours on the Internet, up from 24 hours last year. More than 282 million people watch television in a given month and nearly 162 million use the Internet. Two-thirds of Internet users in the United States, 119 million people, watched video in May.

The amount of online video viewing is low compared with TV — 2 hours and 19 minutes a month on average — and Nielsen does not have a comparable estimate for last year. But given its popularity, it has attracted much interest from media companies and advertisers. All that viewing, 7.5 billion streams and 16.4 billion minutes in total, amounts to new advertising time for the taking.

The report also suggests that mobile video viewing is becoming significant. A Nielsen survey of about 2,000 Americans projects that 4.4 million subscribe to mobile video on their phones. With 217 million people carrying mobile phones in the United States, wireless video is still far from the mainstream. But the survey found that the average user watches 3 hours and 15 minutes a month, a significant amount of time to be watching such a comparatively small screen.

Categories: Articles, Research