IAB Finds 35% Increase in Connected TV Streaming From Last Year

TV watchers in the US are continuing on the multi-screen track. According to data from a new study carried out by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, “The Changing TV Experience: Attitudes and Usage Across Multiple Screens,” US adults are are getting “smarter” TVs, streaming more content, and letting their TVs share the spotlight with other devices.

Smart TVs and/or connected TVs have entered the homes of more than a third of the US population over age 18, with about 38% of those viewers spending half their viewing time with streaming content. Time spent watching streaming content is up 35% from last year amongst connected TV viewers. Meanwhile, people in the country are watching 19% less traditional TV than they did the year before.

Half of these connected TV viewers choose streaming because of the commercials, the IAB’s study showed. A full 40% of them believe that commercials are “less intrusive” on streaming platforms than on traditional television.

It’s not just about the commercials. Connected TV viewers tend be to happy with the viewing experience in general, 76% of them insisting that it’s the same as if not better than regular, old linear television (25% said “better”). These viewers also prefer streaming because of the control they have in picking and choosing content — there’s more of it, they say, and you can watch it whenever you want instead of adhering to TV networks’ schedules.

Still, none of this means that US adults have stopped watching traditional television. According to the report, they watch on average 4.4 hours of TV a day compared to 2.4 on connected TVs. Alas, TV isn’t getting the kind of attention it used to. While watching TV content, 78% of US adults report that they use another device, like a laptop to browse the internet or a smartphone to perhaps go on social media and text (and browse the internet).

For more information on how US adults are using their connected devices and watching “TV” content, check out the full IAB study here. The study took data from an online survey conducted by Vision Critical’s Media & Entertainment Practice for the IAB over a couple days in January 2015. The study was answered by a sample of 651 US adults (ages 18 and up).

*Update: There’s been a correction on this article since its original publication. Time spent watching streaming content on connected TVs among those that own connected TVs increased by 35% since last year — not the number of connected TVs owned in the US.

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