New Nielsen data shows that the allure of online video is encouraging consumers increasingly to use devices they have ready-to-hand to stream video. It also shows consumers are squeezing in an hour more video viewing per week than they did last year.
In the Q2 2016 Nielsen Comparable Metrics report, the company shows how video usage of the connected devices in lives has changed over the last year. Here’s how each device has fared.
The connected TV
Nielsen says that the reach of the connected TV increased 2% year-over-year (yoy) to reach 42.9%, or 104M people.* Users of the device increased the amount of time watching video on the device nearly 13% during that period, to 505 minutes a week. That is over 1 hour and 12 minutes per day.
The smartphone’s reach increased strongly year-over-year, from 71.2% to 80%. The percentage of the population watching video on their smartphone increased almost 10% year-over-year, to reach 46.7% (or 94M people.) The amount of time these people spent watching also increased strongly, from 43 minutes a week to 51 minutes.
The tablet continues to make inroads into the US population with usage for app and web increasing 8%, to reach 36.6% penetration. Video usage by table users increase even more. Last year 14.2% watched video on their tablet, and that increased to 21.4% yoy. Tablet users are now watching 81 minutes of video on the device per week.
Overall, reach of the PC fell over the last year, from 53% to 49.8%. Similarly, the device appears to be being replaced by other connected devices for video. PC video reach fell from 34.7% to 30.9% yoy. However, those still using it for video are watching more. PC video viewers increased time spent with the device an amazing 35% in the last year, to reach 352 minutes a week (25 minutes per day.)
Television reach inched up 0.4% in the last year, to reach 87.4%. Television watching by users remained almost unchanged, at 2,090 minutes per week.
Share of viewing between devices
In the Nielsen report, the company averages video usage across the entire population. The average adult watched 388 minutes a week of connected device video in Q2 2016, an increase of 22% (or 69 minutes) from the previous year. During the same period, time spent with the television by the average adult decreased 9 minutes. Overall, the average adult is finding time to watch an hour extra of video each week.
Nielsen says the connected TV dominates online video consumption. The average adult is now watching 238 minutes a week of video on the connected TV, 109 minutes on the PC, 24 minutes on the smartphone, and 17 minutes on the tablet. However, the share of viewing has shifted significantly since last year.
The connected TV has lost share of connected viewing, falling from 63.9% to 61.3% yoy. PC video share has remained the same. Both the smartphone and tablet have increased their share of consumption slightly. Smartphone video viewing increased from 5% to 6.2%, and tablet video viewing from 2.8% to 4.4%.
Why it matters
Consumers are using devices they already own to watch more video than ever.
The PC is a great illustration of the trend. The device’s reach is falling, and people who also have a smartphone or tablet appear to be abandoning PC streaming in increasing numbers.
That said, those that continue to stream video on their PC are watching more than ever.
*When referring to year-over-year – or yoy – this opinion piece is referring to the period Q2 2015 to Q2 2016.