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TV viewing drops 4.5% but still dominates

UK TV viewing fell by 4.5% during in 2014, with digital viewing rising 17% during the same period, according to new research.

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The latest Broadcasters' Audience Research Board (BARB) figures indicate that total daily TV viewing in the UK during 2014 averaged at three hours, 44 minutes and 30 seconds per person.
This represents a drop of 10 minutes and 30 seconds per day from 2013.

The figures revealed that viewing on other screens such as tablets, smartphones and laptops grew 17% during the year.

Despite to drop, a massive 98.4% of all TV was still watched on a TV set, indicating that larger screens are still the preferred and more social way to watch TV, albeit if consumers are using video on demand services rather than cable and ‘live’’ TV.

Of the 58% of households that own a digital television recorder, 83%of television was watched live, showing that the level of non-live viewing is around 20%. 

The data indicates that 95% of the dip in TV set viewing can be accounted for by TV heaviest viewers (those who watch more than four hours per day) watching less.

Despite a 7.2% drop in heavy viewers the reach of TV in 2014 remained unchanged, 94.6% per week in 2013 compared to 94.2% in 2014. 

Chief executive Lindsey Clay said the study presented a “nuanced” picture.

“After years of record growth for broadcast TV as on-demand began to flower, new viewing trends are now becoming established and there’s a new eco-system for TV,” she added.

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