Online TV audiences grow

22 October 2014

SAN JOSE, CA: Online TV consumption is growing fast in the US thanks to a variety of platforms and the supply of premium content, a new report has said.

The Video Benchmark Report from software company Adobe analysed online video and online TV viewing trends, based on aggregated and anonymous data from more than 1,300 media and entertainment properties using Adobe Marketing Cloud and Adobe Primetime.

This found that TV consumption across devices had leapt 388% from Q2 2013 to Q2 2014, while the number unique monthly viewers had increased 146% over the same period.

While that consumption was fragmented across a number of platforms, two in particular were establishing themselves as relevant: gaming consoles and over-the-top (OTT) devices saw their share almost triple, to the point where Adobe suggested they were "becoming the new desktop in the online TV space".

Another significant development was that Android apps surpassed desktop browsers as access points for watching TV online. They now have a 20% share, still some way behind iOS apps on 51%.

The precipitous decline of desktop browsers, whose share of online TV access roughly halved to 19%, highlights the speed at which this sector is developing.

"Consumers' content consumption habits are changing rapidly," said Jeremy Helfand, vp/Primetime at Adobe. "Viewers expect seamless, more personalised viewing experiences across an ever-increasing number of devices, and broadcasters, media companies and advertisers must transform their digital strategies to optimise the viewing experience."

The amount of online TV content watched per viewer grew by 55% year on year and there are now 105 US TV channels powering more than 300 online TV sites and apps.

And that content growth was in part driven by movies, which, for the first time, passed sports content. Movie networks saw the strongest gain in viewing frequency, the report said, a 125% increase from an average of two movies a month to 4.5. 


Sporting networks, in contrast, grew just 31% to 4.2 sporting events a month.

Data sourced from Business Wire; additional content by Warc staff