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Online TV Doubles

Survey says Viewership Doubled in the Last Two Years

Online TV viewing has been gaining in popularity. Nearly one-fifth of American households who use the internet watch television broadcasts online, double the viewership from 2006, The Conference Board and TNS reports. The top two destinations for online broadcasts are the official TV channel homepage and YouTube.com.

Most consumers do not like a set schedule. Being able to watch broadcasts on their own time and at their convenience are the top reasons users tune in online. Other reasons include avoiding commercials and portability. Nearly 72 percent of online households log on for entertainment purposes on a daily basis, and one in ten cites entertainment as the most important internet activity.

Lynn Franco"Most consumers are pressed for time and require flexibility in their daily schedules and TV viewing habits," says Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center. "Being able to watch broadcasts on their own time and at their convenience are clearly reasons why we are seeing a greater number turning to the Internet. And, it is the reason why we would expect to see this trend continue."

The top five types of shows viewed online are news, drama, sitcom/comedy, reality shows and sports, with user generated content following close behind. Among consumers connecting to online broadcasts, 43 percent tune into the news, 39 percent watch drama shows, 34 percent view sitcom/comedy shows, 23 percent watch reality shows, 16 percent view sports, and 15 percent view user generated content. Other categories attracting viewers include previews, additional content from favorite shows, soap operas, and advertisements.

Among online TV viewers, almost nine out of ten watch online broadcasts at home. About 15 percent say they watch internet broadcasts in the office, and 6 percent watch TV online from other locations, including the library or a friend's home.

"The shift from appointment TV to content on demand is well underway," says Michael Saxon, Senior Vice President, Brand and Communications, TNS. "Fundamentally, consumers expect content to be available when they want it, and on the screen of their choice - TV, PC, or mobile. For consumers, PCs enhance content on demand from simply time-shifting to place-shifting. Online content can be viewed in any room in the house, or at work or school."

youtubeYouTube.com and TV Channel Homepage are Most Popular

The top methods for viewing broadcasts online are streaming video, used by 68 percent of online TV viewers, and free download, used by 38 percent of viewers. The top two destinations for online broadcasts are the official TV channel homepage, accessed by 65 percent of viewers, and YouTube.com, accessed by 41 percent of viewers. Other sites used for access include iTunes, Hulu, file sharing sites, social networking sites, and Limewire. Few consumers are willing to enroll in pay per download and subscription services.

About This Survey The Consumer Internet Barometer is based on a quarterly survey of 10,000 households. A unique sample is surveyed each quarter. Return rates average 70 percent, which ensures highly representative data. Data is weighted as well to reflect the latest U.S. household demographic information. The latest survey was conducted during the third quarter of 2008.

See: The Conference Board for more info.

About The Conference Board For over 90 years, The Conference Board has created and disseminated knowledge about management and the marketplace to help businesses strengthen their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board operates as a global independent membership organization working in the public interest. It publishes information and analysis, makes economics-based forecasts and assesses trends, and facilitates learning by creating dynamic communities of interest that bring together senior executives from around the world. The Conference Board is a not-for-profit organization and holds 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in the United States. For additional information about The Conference Board and how it can meet your needs, visit our website at www.tcb.org

About TNS Our strategic goal is to be recognized as the global leader in delivering value-added information and insights that help our clients to make more effective decisions.
      As industry thought leaders, our people deliver innovative thinking and excellent service to global organizations and local clients worldwide. We work in partnership with our clients, meeting their needs for high-quality information, analysis and foresight across our network of over 70 countries.
      We are the world's foremost provider of custom research and analysis, combining in-depth industry sector understanding with world-class expertise in the areas of new product development, segmentation and positioning research, brand and advertising research and stakeholder management. We are a major supplier of consumer panel, media intelligence and internet, TV and radio audience measurement services. tns-us.com


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