Home Television: Still the Primary Device for Content Viewing

Despite the rise of over-the-top (OTT) content and TV Everywhere, the traditional television set that sits in your living room is still the most popular method by which the American viewing public consumes content.

According to Laure Lawrence of Vubiquity, roughly 85 percent of TV viewing is done on such sets.

“TV is still king,” Lawrence said at a panel discussion in May, adding that only between 7 percent and 9 percent of viewing has migrated to laptops, tablets and smartphones.

But which screen consumers choose for viewing has a lot to do with where they happen to be at a particular point in time, according to BuddyTV CEO Andy Liu. This makes sense, since you can’t watch your television when you’re not home. And when you’re home, you’re more likely to sit on the couch and relax in front of your large-screen television than view content from any other device, such as your smartphone.

Another reason traditional television dominates content viewership is that consumers watch TV to keep up with the news that spills over to digital conversations the next day. This is despite the fact that social media has dramatically changed consumer behaviors. These days, consumers use their multimedia devices to check email, surf the Web and peruse various social media channels, but TV reigns for content magnitude. Even though television is still the most prominent medium for consumption, Lawrence said that customers who value TV Everywhere and on-demand services are “the customers you want.” After all, they are the ones seemingly addicted to the content, consuming it religiously—something undoubtedly good for advertisers.

While traditional television watching will likely not be replaced, just like television did not replace movie viewing in theaters, a fair assumption is that more content will be consumed on mobile devices as the technology progresses and providers enhance their offerings.