Advanced Television

Over half Americans stream TV shows

November 14, 2012

Over half of Americans (53 per cent) indicate having watched digitally streamed TV programming on any device, and streaming is well on its way to becoming a dominant means of viewership among 18-35 year olds, nearly tying top-ranked live feed TV (as it airs) as the way or among the ways they most often watch TV programming (44 per cent live feed TV, 41 per cent streaming).

These are some of the poll results of 2,343 adults surveyed online in October 2012 by Harris Interactive.

Despite US adults – particularly those 35 and under – clearly seeing streaming as a viable viewing option, our TV screens are far from endangered:  when asked to select the way or ways in which they most often watch television programmes, roughly nine in ten Americans (89 per cent) point to their TV sets, sans streaming.

Though they are watching television programming on a TV screen, whether over the air or through cable or satellite providers, American are far from unanimous on how they do so. While over half (56 per cent) identify a live feed as the way, or one of the ways, they most often watch TV programmes, roughly three in ten each specify watching recorded (32 per cent) or cable- or satellite-provided on-demand (29 per cent) programming.

As for streaming – while it may not be overtaking traditional TV viewership methods today, it is by no means an afterthought. A combined three in ten Americans have the ability to watch streamed programming on their TV sets (19 per cent via STBs or game systems, 17 per cent via Internet-compatible TV sets), and two in ten list streaming – on any device – as among the ways they most often watch TV programmes.

Additionally, there is cause to expect growth in the streaming of TV content: two in ten Americans indicate that they are watching more online/streaming TV content now than a year ago (20 per cent) and that that they expect to be watching more a year from now (19 per cent).   And among those not watching more when compared to a year ago, roughly six in ten (59 per cent) indicate that there are factors which could encourage them to watch more online/streaming TV programming; top factors include improved free streaming options (31 per cent), access to programming they currently cannot (or don’t think they can) get via streaming (20 per cent), not having to watch on a computer screen (19 per cent), access to a sufficiently fast connection (17 per cent) and ease of access (17 per cent).

Categories: Articles, Consumer Behaviour, Equipment, OTT, OTT, Research