Boomers, millennials watch TV differently, study reveals

There’s a media market generation gap between baby boomers and millennials, those ages 18 to 34, with the former showing a strong preference for linear TV viewing and the latter being far more at ease with new technologies that allow them to access the content they desire, according to a newly released study.

Conducted by Millward Brown and commissioned by the Hallmark Channel, the study, “The Consumer Television and Technology Study," evaluated adoption of new TV technologies, viewer engagement, buying power and brand loyalty.

Among the findings:

  • 31 percent of millennials believe new TV technologies are complicated and difficult to use vs. 55 percent of boomers
  • 45 percent of millennials who have a DVR use it regularly or fairly often vs. 24 percent of boomers
  • 87 percent of millennials who have a DVR say they regularly fast forward through commercials and are more likely to be switching channels and multitasking while the television is on
  • Millennials are more than twice as likely as boomers to consider buying a DVR next year (11 percent of boomers vs. 25 percent of millennials)
  • 27 percent of millennials go to Web sites to watch video vs. 9 percent of boomers
  • 52 percent of millennials are more likely to consider mobile devices as forms of entertainment vs. 35 percent of boomers.

According to the study, boomers are more traditional in their viewing habits and slower in their adoption of new TV technology products.

For example, boomers who own DVRs are less likely to fast forward through or skip commercials. They also are less likely to take part in other activities while watching TV and more likely to stay on one channel while the show they are watching airs.

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