DVR Penetration Reaches 40 Percent

DURHAM, N.H.: Around 40 percent of U.S. households now have at least one digital video recording, according to the latest consumer research from Leichtman Research Group. The figure represents an increase from just 8 percent five years ago.

The broadcast networks took note of the use of DVRs during the first week of the new fall season, according to The New York Times. Viewership in some cases increased by 15 to 20 percent when time-shifted viewing was factored in.

Leichtman’s survey yielded additional information about DVR households. One-third of them hadmore than one of the devices. DVR households made around 34 percent more money (the mean) than households without DVRs.

The use of video-on-demand is on the rise as well. Leichtman said 64 percent of all digital cable subscribers have used VOD, and of those, 83 percent within the last month of being queried. I.e., more than half of all digital cable subs tapped into VOD. Five years ago, just 50 percent had used it even once.

Leichtman took a look at Netflix users; 87 percent subscribed to pay TV service, and 34 percent to a premium service. Within the previous month, 60 percent used the “Watch Instantly” Netflix feature by which a movie is downloaded for immediate viewing. Two percent did so daily; 6 percent, weekly.

Leichtman’s findings were based on a phone survey of 1,300 U.S. households in July and August for it’s ninth annual study on VOD and DVRs. Statistical margin of error was +/- 2.7 percent.

“DVR and VOD users have significantly increased over the past five years, yet over 90 percent of all TV viewing in the U.S. is still of live TV,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group. “LRG forecasts that DVR and VOD’s share of total TV viewing time in the U.S. will increase from less than 10 percent today to about 22 percent by the end of 2015.”