Nielsen: Broadcast Reliance Grew in 2012

NEW YORK – The latest set of Nielsen figures indicate that reliance on broadcast television grew in 2012. The firm’s third-quarter Cross Platform Report for 2012 shows over-the-air households went from 11 million in 3Q11 to 11.1 million in 3Q12, an increase of around 0.6 percent. That puts the percentage of U.S. TV households that rely exclusively on over-the-air (versus pay) TV at 9.8 percent, a figure that’s only slightly off from another recent Nielsen report that suggested reliance was at 9 percent.

The report indicated that cord-cutting diminished cable subscribership by 4 percent, from 61.2 million for 3Q11 to 58.5 million in 3Q12, a difference of 2.7 million. Satellite TV inched up 124,000 subscribers—also a fraction of a percent—
to 34.8 million during the same period. TelcoTV had the most growth with the fewest overall subscribers, from 8.3 million to 9.5 million, an increase of 15 percent.

Adding broadband to the mix, only about half the broadcast-only homes also had broadband—5.3 million in 3Q12. Pay TV-plus-broadband homes numbered 78.5 million.

In terms of viewing time, Americans spent more than 34 hours a week in front of a TV set in 3Q12, up 18 minutes over the previous quarter. Cable came out on top in live viewing, with 74.1 percent versus 63.9 percent for broadcasting and 91.3 percent for syndicated programming. Broadcast fared better under time-shifting scenarios, catching 99.4 percent of the audience at 21 days versus 98.5 percent for cable and 99.9 percent for syndie.

The majority of viewing, as always, was on a traditional TV set. Viewers spent 148 hours and three minutes a month watching TV in the third quarter. Eleven hours, 30 minutes was spending watching time-shifted content; 5:17 on DVD or Blu-Ray players; 6:38 on game consoles; 28:58 on a computer and 5:25 on smartphones.
~ Deborah D. McAdams

February 9, 2012…
Wireless TV Households on the Rise
Wireless TV: It’s the latest thing. Nielsen’s latest Cross-Platform Report says U.S. households opting for the combination of broadband and wireless TV--otherwise known as “broadcasting”--rose nearly 23 percent between the third quarters of 2010 and last year.