Report: Second-screen viewing just 1.5 percent of total in U.K.

The popularity of watching linear television among U.K. viewers remains strong and the time spent watching traditional TV continues to far exceed that spent watching programming on second-screen devices, according to a newly released summary of viewing data for first half of the year from Thinkbox, a British entity devoted to marketing television in all of its forms.

For the period, the average daily time spent viewing linear TV in the United Kingdom was 3 hours, 58 minutes compared to three minutes and 30 seconds per day for second-screen devices like media tablets, smartphones and computers. On a percentage basis, second-screen viewing accounted for just 1.5 percent of all viewing time.

Thinkbox, which is owned by U.K. broadcasters Channel 4, ITV, Sky Media, Turner Media Innovations and UKTV, found that most of the time viewers spent watching video content on second-screen devices via established services such as ITV Player, Sky Go, 4OD and BBC iPlayer, and new services like Dave On-demand, was devoted to on-demand content.

As Internet-connected TVs proliferate, however, some on-demand viewing currently being done on second-screen devices, will likely move to the television set, according to Thinkbox.

“We know that people watch live TV and on demand TV for different reasons,” said Thinkbox managing director Lindsey Clay. “They co-exist and together are helping TV to grow as a medium.”

The time spent watching second-screen devices represented a slight increase (up from 1.2 percent of all viewing) compared to the level for all of 2012, while total linear TV time dropped from 4 hours, one minute for the same six-month period in 2012. Thinkbox attributes the slight drop in linear viewing to an improving economy that has taken people away from their TVs.

Thinkbox also said the average U.K viewer watched 48 ads a day, five more than five years ago.