WEB-ONLY VIEWING TO PASS ANTENNA TV
Two new reports show just how fast video viewing via the Internet is growing – and how that viewing is both a threat an opportunity for traditional television programming providers, broadcast or cable. The Adobe Digital Index report for Q1 of 2014 finds that online video consumption is exploding. No surprise there. But the report finds that TV content is a big driver, with TV Everywhere usage up 246% year-over-year. The growth of TV Everywhere – consumers watching TV programming on their desktop, mobile devices and tablets as part of their pay TV subscription – is growing much faster than overall online video viewing.
Meanwhile, a report from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) on the U.S. market for household television services finds dramatic growth in people watching video on Internet-connected devices. The CEA study also looked at cord-cutting and found that the percentage of U.S. households who rely exclusively on over-the-air (OTA) broadcast television viewing via an antenna (6%) is about to be eclipsed by the percentage of over-the-top (OTT) only homes relying exclusively on the Internet for TV programming (5%). But the TV screen is still king. CEA found that 97% of homes have a TV for viewing video – the highest penetration of any device – and TV screens also account for the strongest level of video viewing, 93%, “especially now that Internet-enabled television have reached mainstream consumers,”” CEA said. By doing a little math in reverse, we can conclude that a good portion of the OTT-only homes have a TV screen that’s connected only to the Internet, with only 3% of homes either watching exclusively on small-screen devices or not watching video content at all.
“More and more, the notion of having ‘a television’ is becoming an archaic concept,” said Tamara Gaffney, principal analyst with Adobe Digital Index. “That thing hanging on your wall or standing in your corner is just a really big screen.” Adobe points to OTT access-point devices like Apple TV and Roku as major growth drivers, as well as game consoles like Xbox One and Play Station 4. Adobe reports a whopping 539% share growth of TV Everywhere authenticated video from gaming consoles and OTT.
Engagement with TV Everywhere is also up dramatically. Adobe reports that the number of TV Everywhere videos watched per visitor each month increased year-over-year by 133% across all devices types.
The CEA study found that the percentage of U.S. TV households consuming at least some TV programming via the Internet has grown dramatically in the past year – at 45% in the new report compared to 28% a year ago. Incidentally, CEA CEO Gary Shapiro used the data to put in a plug for moving more TV spectrum to deliver broadband wireless. He said “it’s clear that the free, public spectrum given to broadcasters could be put to much better use.”