Arlington, Va. - Only 8 percent of Americans receive TV programming via over-the-air broadcasts, a recent Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) study found.
The survey of 1,256 adults conducted in December 2010 noted that over-the-air viewing has declined steadily since 2005.
CEA used the report to call for a reduction in the amount of spectrum allocated to TV broadcasters.
The survey asked if those who use a pay-TV service would abandon it for over-the-air broadcasts or Internet video. Seventy-six percent said they would not consider doing so, but 10 percent were likely or very likely to cut their cable.
The report indicated more people were viewing Internet content on their TVs, but mobile devices are starting to gain in popularity as video-watching platforms. No numbers were given in these cases.
"Over-the-air TV was once the defining distribution platform," said Gary Shapiro, CEA president and CEO. "But using huge swaths of wireless spectrum to deliver TV to homes no longer makes economic sense. Congress should pass legislation to allow for incentive auctions so free market dynamics can find the best purposes for underused broadcast spectrum, such as wireless broadband."