How Are Adults Using TV Screens?

February 14, 2019

This article is included in these additional categories:

Digital | Industries | Media & Entertainment | Sports | Television | TV Audiences & Consumption | Video

While TV devices have often been seen as a form of ‘traditional’ media by marketers, the reality is that some three-quarters of US households have an internet-connected TV. So what are viewers actually using their TV screens for? Analysis by TiVo [download page] provides some insight, showing that even with new-fangled technology, viewing habits haven’t completely changed.

The television is still largely being used in the good old-fashioned way. Nearly three-quarters (73%) of adults in North America use it to watch TV shows, while close to half (45%) use their TV to watch live sports.

US teenagers reportedly spend one-third (33%) of their video time on YouTube, and the predominance of Smart TVs is also proving to be useful for adults who want to stream YouTube on a bigger screen. One-third of the adults surveyed say they use their TV to stream the service.

Meanwhile, slightly more than one-quarter of respondents said they played games on a gaming console using their television screen. This number seems somewhat low considering that a report from Entertainment Software Association (ESA) from early 2018 revealed that 115.3 million US adults owned video game consoles.

Finally, 18% of respondents say they use their TV screens to watch personal videos and another 16% use their TV to cast video content via the internet.

More People Have Access to Voice Search

Finding content to watch on TV is getting easier as voice search becomes more prevalent. Some 30% of respondents said they currently have access to voice search, which is up from 24% in 2017. Of those who have access to voice search, 18% are actually using it.

Separately, 18% of those surveyed said they would like to have access to voice search. However, one-third said they had no interest in it.

To read more, download the report here.

About the Data: The report was compiled from a survey of 4,458 adults ages 18 years and older from the US and Canada.

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