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Young Adults Watch Out of the Home

NEW YORK: For young adults, defined as those between the ages of 18 and 24, television watching isn’t limited to the couch.

According to results released this week by The Nielsen Co., out-of-home-television viewing [PDF] is on the increase for both marquee sporting events and regular programming, particularly for young adults.

The findings are based on data from the Nielsen and Integrated Media Measurement Inc (IMMI) out-of-home service, which captured linear television audiences outside of the home March–November 2008.

According to Nielsen, the average Total Day lift from out-of-home viewing was 2.6% over the reported National People Meter rating, with daytime and weekend viewing benefiting the most, percentage wise. Broadcast networks received the highest OOH ratings with sports programming providing the greatest out-of-home viewership.

The Nielsen-IMMI Out-of-Home measurement panel included persons aged 13–54 from across the country, but with a particular focus on New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Miami and Denver.

A customized smart phone with IMMI technology pre-installed was given to each panelist to gather information about what was watched where. The phone converted ambient sounds into digital audio signatures which were later matched against a reference library to produce viewing estimates. Bluetooth beacons in the panelists’ homes helped ensure that in-home viewing was differentiated from out-of-home viewing.

A total of 4,700 panelists were recruited; 3,000 in the six focus markets.