TV Viewing Study: Americans Watch The Most

Americans watch the most television of any country in the world, equivalent to one full day each week, according to new study from Motorola Mobility, which perhaps gives the US the gold medal in the coach potato Olympics.

These findings give a new meaning to “must see TV.”

According to the company’s fourth annual Media Engagement Barometer, US residents watch TV 23 hours a week (along with six hours of movies), the most of any country, if these findings are to be believed. Sweden and Japan (at 15 hours and two hours, respectively) watch the least. The average around the world is a still-robust 19 hours a week (up from 10 in 2011).

Other findings from the Google-owned Motorola Mobility study of 9,500 consumers in 17 countries indicated that time-shifting is increasing popular, with 29 percent of TV viewers around the world recording content each week.

Interestingly enough, in the US, we never get around to watching 41 percent of the saved content (31 percent in other countries), in part because we run out of storage space on the device. Nearly half of American homes own a DVR, the study claims, a significant increase over prior years. For all consumers, DVR use flows from two favorite programs being on at the same time (77 percent) and to avoid commercials (68 percent), the media engagement study suggests.

The living room or family room is still the “epicenter” of television viewing — at least for live programming — but consumers increasingly are using their smartphones and tablets instead of TVs in the bedroom and other areas to watch content. Tablet users are much more likely to watch recorded content (80 percent versus 65 percent of non-tablet users). Perhaps of most interest to content providers and programmers, three out of four consumers would prefer “a service that automatically loaded content a user liked to their mobile phone or tablet, to enjoy when on the move.”

As other data has shown, this study also confirmed that younger audiences are more likely to use social media such as Twitter to comment on TV programs in real time.

Motorola Mobility exec John Burke had this to say about global media consumption: “This year’s study shows us that consumers take their viewing experiences very seriously. They want to be firmly in control of the way they experience their videos, but they’re frustrated. Increasingly, they’re using tablets and smartphones to view their content, and they expect this experience to transition seamlessly across their favorite programs, whenever and wherever they like.”

The findings also suggested that 16 percent of multitasking consumers used their smartphones in the bathroom, while nine percent use their tablet devices there.

Are you watching more or less TV, and are you more likely to use your portable device to view recorded content?

[Image credit: Shutterstock]

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