Advanced Television

Majority of Canadians are marathon viewers

June 11, 2013

A Rogers Innovation Report reveals that Canadians’ love affair with their TVs continues and that technology is significantly changing where and how they watch it.

The report shows that a majority of Canadians participate in TV marathon sessions, access TV entertainment on smartphones and tablets, and are using social media to enhance their viewing experiences.

“Canadians have an insatiable appetite for compelling content and technology is driving a transformation in how we consume entertainment. Viewers are diving deeper into plots and storylines, pressing play on one episode after another,” said David Purdy, senior vice-president, content, Rogers Communications. “We’ve become entertainment multi-taskers, using smartphones and tablets to stream content, and to stay plugged into social media.”

Technology that controls and customises TV experiences is playing a more significant role in how Canadians consume content. Access to on demand content can spur long viewing sessions. Nearly half of the respondents who use this service also admit to marathon viewing – sequentially watching three or more episodes or two or more movies.

While TV screens are the main attraction, place-shifting has increased in popularity as more Canadians watch content on secondary screens.  In fact, 71 per cent of respondents said they tune into their favourite TV shows on their smartphones, tablets and laptops.

The report reveals the following Canadian viewing trends – from the typical viewing session and the gender divide, to the most common (and uncommon) places to watch TV:

•    The TV Marathon Generation: More than 80 per cent of Canadians have watched three or more TV episodes or two or more movies back-to-back this year. The longest consecutive viewing session averages more than five hours on a weekday and almost seven hours on a weekend. Those 34 years of age or under are the highest volume viewers; more than half of those watching multiple episodes find it difficult to ‘wait to find out what happens next.’

•    Screen Love: On average, Canadians say they fit in 22 hours of TV viewing per week, while one in 10 watches more than 40 hours per week. Next to TV screens, computers and laptops (57 per cent and 60 per cent, respectively) are the most commonly used screens to view content, followed by smartphones (42 per cent) and tablets (23 per cent). Those age 34 or under are more likely to watch content on second screens (nine out of 10).

•    The Multiscreen Tasker: Seven out of 10 Canadians who own a smartphone, tablet or computer use one of these devices while watching television. They use the second screen to look up information online (more than a third), monitor social media activity (one out of five) and text friends (one out of five).

•    TV Joins Canadians in the Bedroom and the Bathroom: More than half of Canadians who view content on a smartphone or tablet continue to watch TV in bed, while one out of 10 tune in while they are in the bathroom and at work.

•    Screen Time vs. Snooze Time: Eight out of 10 Canadians admit to sacrificing sleep so they can watch more TV. Men are twice as likely as women to show up late for work the next day due to lengthy viewing sessions.

•    Canadians Love to have a Laugh and Relax: Canadians can laugh it off; six out of 10 viewers watch a copious amount of comedy, while half are engrossed in action and / or drama. Also, one out of 10 Canadians confess to paying less attention to their personal appearance and almost half have admitted to neglecting their household chores as a result of marathon viewing.

•    Remote Control, men vs. women: Chivalry is alive and well. In adult-only households, men are more likely than women to claim they “let their partner decide what to watch”. Men have a stronger love affair with their TV; participating in longer TV viewing sessions (7.2 hours on average vs. 6.3 hours). When consuming a large amount of content at once, men prefer sports, while women opt for drama.

•    TV is the Guest of Honour:  Almost half of Canadians have hosted or attended a viewing party in the past year, with the majority starring sports, followed by multiple movies and some or all of a season of a TV series.

Categories: Articles, Consumer Behaviour, Mobile, OTT, OTT, Portable Media, Research, VOD