Study: HD Homes Surpass 60 Percent

While it doesn't indicate exactly how many homes are actually watching HD content, a new study finds that the percentage of American consumers who own HDTV sets is approaching two-thirds (62 percent).

If those in the study make good on their wish to purchase HD sets in the next 24 months (12 percent), that would bring the total percentage of HD homes in America to about 75 percent by early 2012. Still, study author Opinion Research Company cautions that "while purchase intention over the next 24 months looks promising, the economy remains a major hurdle to sustainable growth."

"As movie studios, cable and satellite operators, and broadcast networks offer more and more high-definition programming, consumers are responding by upgrading to [HD sets]," said ORC, based in Princeton, N.J., which gave no details regarding how many people it surveyed, or a margin-of-error factor.

Previous studies have often indicated that some HD-ready dwellings are not actually viewing HD channels for various reason — including not knowing that not all channels viewable on an HD screen are high definition, ignorant of the fact that HD is also available terrestrially via antennas for many viewers, or simply an unwillingness to pay extra to receive HD services from a cabler or DBS firm.

As far as 3D goes, the study (PDF) will not be used by marketers anytime soon. A mere 5 percent of those polled said they were planning to buy 3D-equipped TV units in the next two years.