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Worldwide use of media tablets to watch TV, video content doubles, says study

Consumers are picking up their media tablets and watching more TV and video content than ever, according to a new study from NPD DisplaySearch.

The new research, "Global TV Replacement Study," found using of tablets, such as iPads and Android-based tablets, to view content more than doubled in 14 regional markets. The increased viewing appears to be a consequence of increased purchases of media tablets in the markets, which was driven by an improved connectivity infrastructure.

Use of tablets in the United States to watch TV and video content was up more than threefold year over year, according to the study. France also saw a threefold increase.

However, the greatest growth was in Turkey where tablet use climbed from 4.1 percent last year to 16.5 percent in 2012. Germany witnessed the second fastest growth at nearly fourfold year over year.

Tablets weren't the only alternate platform consumers used to watch content. Laptop and mobile phone viewing of TV and video content grew as well.

In all, more than 70 percent of consumers use alternate electronic devices, such as tablets, notebook PCs, smartphones, MP3 players and desktop computers, to view TV/video content, according to the study.

In mature markets like the U.S., the UK and Germany, a greater number of people viewed video content on portable computing devices, such as tablets and notebook PCs. In emerging markets like China, Indonesia, Russia and Turkey, consumers reported that they view content on mobile devices, such as smartphones, likely due to the relatively high penetration of wireless networks.

"While the trends vary by region, it is evident that consumers around the globe are watching more video and TV content with their portable electronic devices as these provide additional means of accessing content," said Riddhi Patel, research director of Consumer Insights for NPD DisplaySearch. "Despite this increase, however, TVs still remain the primary device of choice for viewing TV content, with 30 percent of consumers reporting that they view TV/video content on TVs alone."