Survey Says: People Spend One-Third of Leisure Time Watching TV

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN: People worldwide spend more than a third of the leisure time watching video, mostly on TV. This just in from Ericsson’s ConsumerLab, which collected data in the United States, China, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan and the United Kingdom for its “Multi Screen Media Consumption 2010” report.

Ericsson’s data indicates that people are spending up to 35 percent of their leisure time watching TV and video content. At least once a week, 93 percent watched scheduled, linear broadcast TV. More than 70 percent of consumers surveyed said they were streaming, downloading or watching recorded broadcast TV on a weekly basis, and 50 percent used Internet-based on-demand TV and video each week.

That’s for now. Patterns are changing, said Ericsson’s Anders Erlandsson.

“It’s a trial-and-error market with lots of curiosity around it,” he said. “The consumer is looking for a solution that can offer them the freedom to choose what they want, when they want it and how they want it. The user experience is in focus, rather than the technical platform.”

The data showed a correlation between the features consumers find important and their willingness to pay for them. Today, consumer spending is not proportionate to the viewing time invested, according to Ericsson. The average consumer spends €38 (US$48) per month on TV viewing, and almost 60 percent of that “relates to broadcast TV.” However, broadcast TV accounted for about 40 percent of total viewing time.

The study, said to represent 300 million consumers, also pinged subjects on tablet computers and how those would fit into TV consumption. Thirty-seven percent said they were interested in using them as remote controls.

Ericsson said the data showed that “consumer spending will shift in the future, with a significant increase in on-demand spending, provided that consumer requirements for high quality, ease of use and access to the right content are met.”