DVR-recorded programming and streaming video are quickly surpassing live TV watching, as consumers shift toward on-demand and mobile viewing.
TiVo, a creator of television services and advertising solutions for digital video recorders, released a report showing nearly two-thirds of viewing on Web-connected TiVo units is delayed television, or on-demand video via broadband connections.
TiVo’s audience research unit, which tracks anonymous usage across more than two million TiVo devices, discovered only 38 percent are viewing that programming live.
“The trend here is obvious. For most of their video, these consumers prefer to watch on-demand, whether it’s recorded off the air, cable, satellite, or delivered via broadband, ” said Tara Maitra, general manager of content and media sales for TiVo. “It really has become all about whatever they want to watch, whenever they want to watch it.”
Cable and satellite providers are taking notice, too. For example, this past fall DirectTV announced its $150 Nomad device to send DVR recordings to mobile devices, marking the satellite provider’s entrance into the connected-TV market along other competitors.
The 16-gigabyte Nomad has one Ethernet and two USB ports and stores up to 20 hours of content for offline viewing for DirecTV DVR subscribers, and can sync with up to five mobile devices within one home Wi-Fi network, as well as automatically preparing new show episodes for download.
Another project tapping into the transforming TV market is Hauppage Digital’s “Broadway” device, which streams standard and high-definition channels over Wi-Fi to nearby mobile phones and tablets. The Broadway requires only that users sign in to watch their favorite films and shows, unlike the Nomad, which does not offer popular streaming services.
Besides devices like Broadway and Nomad, various apps now make it possible to watch TV content on one’s iPhone or Android handset, though content is usually restricted to specific networks or channels. Sony’s “Crackle” app, for instance, streams content from Crackle.com.
Similarly to Nomad, Comcast’s “Xfinity TV” iPad app lets subscribers watch 3,000 hours of on-demand shows like those from HBO and Showtime.
TiVo’s survey puts a number on a sea change that giants like Netflix and Hulu helped forge, and cable and TV companies are quickly jumping aboard, trying to survive the shifting mix of consumer entertainment.
Just as people are pulling the plug on their home telephone service, many are also contemplating cutting the cord on traditional TV services and dumping their set-top boxes for mobile devices, as they increasing consume content on demand, and on the go.
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