Survey: Internet viewership up; cord cutting not so much

Tue, 08/24/2010 - 8:15am
Brian Santo

The number of people who watch broadcast TV programming on the Internet has doubled in the last year, according to a new survey.

The worry is that consumption of Internet video might lead to cord cutting, but there's been little evidence of that so far.

Those conducting the survey, Altman Vilandrie & Co. and Peanut Labs, basically back up the belief held by many MVPDs that the phenomenon can be an opportunity for cable and satellite providers.

"Providers that can be nimble in adopting mobile video, 3-D and other innovations will stem potential defections, especially among younger consumers," said Altman Vilandrie director Jonathan Hurd, who oversaw the research and analysis.

The survey also found:

  • More online TV watching has not yet translated into cord cutting – only 3 percent of 18-34 year olds have cancelled their cable service. However, 25 percent of 18-34 year olds "have seriously considered dropping my subscription TV service because Internet video services meet most of my needs."
  • Broadcast TV viewing is age-related, with only 42 percent of 18-34 year olds watching TV shows daily during their normal broadcast time, versus 60 percent of those 35 and older.
  • 16 percent of 18-34 year olds watch full TV broadcast episodes on the Internet daily, versus only 6 percent of those 35 and older. Overall, 10 percent of survey respondents say they watch full TV episodes on the Internet daily versus only 5 percent in a similar 2009 study.

Despite Internet video viewing and potential cord cutting, younger segments prefer HD just as much as other segments. Spending level on TV service is a significant driver of HD interest, with the highest-spending segment being twice as likely to say they are "tremendously" bothered by a lack of HD than the lowest-spending segment, the survey found.

Interest in 3-D is high across all segments. Of those who have seen movies in 3-D, 34 percent agree that 3-D is "significantly better," and more than 50 percent plan to purchase a 3-D-capable TV set in the next three years.

Mobile video usage has grown significantly since 2009, with 13 percent of 18-34 year olds viewing video on a mobile phone daily versus 5 percent in 2009.

More Broadband Direct 8/24/10:

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•  Comcast pushes play on AnyRoom DVR in Boston
•  Harmonic takes wraps off of HectoQAM
•  Suddenlink debuts NFL Network
•  TiVo adds slide-out keyboard to remote
•  Sunrise debuts lightweight DSL tester
•  Toshiba developing no-glasses 3-D TVs
•  Survey: Internet viewership up; cord cutting not so much
•  CommScope expands partner program
•  Nokia, Intel launch joint research venture
•  CTIA, others reject FM transmitter mandate

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