The latest quarterly report examines overall media usage across linear (television and radio) and digital platforms, reviews consumer access to devices and services, digs deeper into TV-connected device use, explores usage differences across various ages and race/ethnicities, and provides insights into households not considered television homes.
According to Nielsen, nine out of 10 U.S. adults (18+) use linear platforms in the average week. Live+Time-shifted TV viewing reached 88% of persons in Q1 2018, while radio had the largest reach across platforms at 92%. Radio also reaches 96% of all Hispanic adults each week. Over a third of persons use their internet connected devices (including apps on their smart TVs) during the average week, with a higher reach of 43% for Asian Americans. Computer reach is highest with Asian Americans as well, with 71% using the device weekly. Regardless of race or ethnicity, smartphones remain universally popular, reaching four out of five adults while tablets are used by less than half of all adults weekly.
The report reveals U-S adults are spending nearly half a day—over 11 hours—listening to, watching, reading or generally interacting with media. Time spent across all media in Q1 2018 increased 19 minutes from the prior quarter. This increase in media time is driven by more time on TV-connected devices (+5 minutes) and with digital platforms (+13 minutes). Live+Time-shifted TV viewing remained relatively flat at four hours and 46 minutes a day. Note that seasonality plays a role with quarterly television usage trends, particularly as people transition from holiday breaks and the occurrence of several marquee sporting events, such as the Olympics and the Super Bowl. Radio usage wasone hour and 46 minutes in Q1 2018, trending consistently with prior quarters.
Digital usage across computer, smartphone, and tablet continue to play a growing role with the adult U-S. consumer. In Q1 2018, three hours and 48 minutes a day were spent on digital, with app/web usage on smartphone accounting for 62% of that time.
Other Highlights From Q1 2018 Report:
- 92% of U.S. adults listen to radio each week, the highest reach across platforms.
- On average, U.S. adults are spending over 11 hours a day connected to linear and digital media and almost six hours a day with video alone.
- Young adults 18-34 spend the largest percentage of time with TV-connected devices and digital devices compared to other demographics.
- Black adults are the heaviest users of media overall. Compared to overall U.S., Hispanics listen to more radio, and Asian Americans spend more time with computers and tablets.
- Nearly 3% of TV homes subscribe to a virtual multichannel video programming distributor (vMVPD).
- Almost 20% of consumers use a smart speaker in the household.
- Two-thirds of U.S. TV households have devices capable of streaming content to the TV set.
- One out of 10 minutes of television use in streaming capable homes is streaming to the TV set.
- Over eight in 10 non-television households still view video content.
It’s no secret that media usage varies by demographic—not only by total time spent, but also in the distribution of time spent across media platforms.
Older demos tend to lean more on traditional mediums, while younger generations are often early adopters of nascent technology. For instance, in Q1 2018, younger adults (18-34) spent less than nine hours a day as compared to older adults (50+) who spend over 12 hours a day with content across platforms. With older demos, more time is spent with linear platforms of television and radio with less time on digital platforms.
The Total audience Report also takes a look at the percent of time people spend with these platforms, and a different story begins to emerge. Regardless of age, radio consistently accounts for between 14-17% of daily media use. Adults 18-34 spend more time with digital platforms (43%) than TV and TV-connected devices (40%). Older adults spend more time on live and time-shifted content and less time on TV-connected device use and digital platforms, outside of tablet.