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Deloitte: 71% of Americans Still Prefer Watching TV

1 Feb, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

A majority of Americans still consider watching television in the home, on the Internet or portable device their favorite media activity, according to a new study.

In its “State of the Media Democracy” survey, consulting firm Deloitte LLP found that 71% of 2,000 respondents preferred watching TV programming and 86% said TV advertising had the most impact on their purchase decisions.

The findings underscore the continued strength of original and repurposed TV programming and live sports, regardless of the platform it is viewed on.

The survey also found that nearly three-quarters of American consumers are multitasking while watching TV, including 42% who are online, 29% who are talking on cellphones or mobile devices and 26% who are sending instant messages or text messages.

“Consumers are not only watching television, they are talking about it, and those conversations are frequently taking place in real time online and via IM/texting,” said Phil Asmundson, vice chairman and technology, and media and telecommunications industry leader at Deloitte. “By embracing the Internet as a platform that encourages audiences to participate in discussions about their favorite programs, television is maintaining its hold on the American public. People want to be part of the real-time conversation and they are embracing both platforms in a complementary fashion.”

Indeed, the study found 33% of households now own a smart phone, up from 11% three years ago, and 40% of consumers who do not own a smart phone are likely to purchase one in the near future. This marked rise in smart phone penetration in the U.S. market is rapidly changing consumer behavior, with 56% of smart phone and laptop owners stating that they used their smart phones as a replacement for their laptop while away from home, jumping significantly from 41% in only three months.

Asmundson said as smart phone and monthly service prices fall, consumers increasingly opt to migrate personal activities on the go via portable devices.

“We expect smart phone adoption rates to continue to climb as new network technologies such as 4G begin to make the user experience even faster and more seamless,” he said.

The report also found that 70% of Americans said they continue to read printed magazines, such as Home Media Magazine, even though they know that they could find most of the same information online (www.homemediamagazine.com), and 55% continue to subscribe to printed magazines.


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