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TVs Join PCs As Music-Playback Devices

Dallas – About two-thirds of U.S. and Canadian broadband households regularly use a PC to play music at home, and one-third use a television to listen to music, a Parks Associates survey found.

The number of households using a TV to listen to music equaled the number of households using MP3 players at home to listen to music, according to the research company’s Digital Media Habits II report. At-home music listening through portable game players, game consoles, or cellphones was reported by about 10 percent of households or less (see table).

“iPods are sexy, but not everybody has one,” said research director John Barrett. “TVs are ubiquitous and increasingly capable of delivering a range of content, especially with new features like digital music delivery and place-shifting services. This is just the tip of the iceberg for TV applications.”

Developers and service providers should account for these standard platforms when designing new digital entertainment services, Parks noted.

The survey of 2,000 broadband households in the U.S. and Canada was conducted in the third quarter of 2007.

The report’s topics include the types of digital media being used and across what platforms, how extensively platforms are being used for “non-core” purposes, such as using a game console to watch movies, the incorporation of TVs into digital media habits by direct or networked connections, the use of game consoles as a platform for video & music, and the extent to which differing music-playback platforms are being connected. Another topic is the overlap between portable devices, such as digital cameras and video cameras or MP3 players and cellphones.