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NPD: Online Entertainment Shifts To TVs

Port Washington, N.Y. – The TV has outstripped the PC as the primary viewing screen of paid and free online streaming-video content in the past year, according to a recent survey conducted by The NPD Group. 9/26/2012 06:51:00 AM Eastern

Port Washington, N.Y. – The TV has outstripped the PC as the primary viewing screen of paid and free online streaming-video content in the past year, according to a recent survey conducted by The NPD Group.

NPD’s recent “Digital Video Outlook” said paid and free video streaming from the web to TV screens has risen from 33 percent to 45 percent over the past 12 months.

During the same period, consumers who used a PC as the primary screen for viewing over-the-top (OTT) streamed-video content declined from 48 percent to 31 percent, the study shows.

“This shift not only reflects a strong consumer preference for watching TV and movies on big screen TVs, but also coincides with the rapid adoption of Internet-connectible TVs,” NPD said in announcing the survey.

The shift can be attributed to the installation of millions of Internet-connected TVs.

As of the second quarter of 2012, 12 percent of the installed base of consumer TVs in the U.S. were connected TVs, totaling more than 29 million devices, the study shows.

Approximately 10 percent of U.S. consumer households currently own at least one connected TV.

The 43 percent of viewers now viewing connected TVs are primarily accessing online video, music and Cloud services.

“The growth in connected TVs is another sign that online video is maturing,” said Russ Crupnick, NPD industry analysis senior VP. “Streaming video has moved from the dorm room to the living room — and, as more households obtain and connect TVs to the web, we predict increased trial and engagement for video distribution services.”

The dominant application for web-to-TV viewing was Netflix Watch Instantly, which is viewed by 40 percent of connected TV viewers. Twelve percent access HuluPlus, and 4 percent connect to Vudu.

NPD said people are choosing TVs over PCs to view web entertainment because TVs offer direct access to this content in a more convenient way than PCs or other Internet-connected peripheral devices.

NPD’s study also found that nearly one in five connected-TV installations resulted in consumers no longer using peripheral devices, such as streaming-media players, video game consoles, and Blu-ray Disc players, to access streaming video on the TV. This decline in usage could impact the usage models and utility of peripheral devices.

The report was based on data collected from multiple sources, including two electronic surveys of approximately 10,000 respondents. The quarterly survey includes approximately 1,200 U.S. broadband households. Survey data was weighted to represent U.S. population (age 13 and older) and tested for statistical significance at the 95 percent confidence level. Data from this survey has a 97 percent level of confidence, with a +/- 0.7 percent margin of error.

For more information on the study, contact NPD.

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