Younger viewers turning to new electronic devices to watch movies

Younger viewers are leading the charge in embracing new devices for movie watching, according to findings from a national survey of online video viewers released at the NCTA 2011 Cable Show in Chicago by Epix, the online movie joint venture between Viacom, its Paramount Pictures unit, MGM and Lionsgate.

Specifically, viewers between the ages of 25 to 34 are significantly more likely to use video-capable iPods (24 per cent), iPads and tablet computers (21 per cent), smartphones (21 per cent) and netbooks (15 per cent) to watch movies than viewers between 35 to 64 years old, demonstrating that demand for content on mobile electronic devices is real and an integral part of the next generation’s viewing behaviour

“The results of this study illustrate the fact that consumers are increasingly accessing entertainment content wherever and whenever it is available and underscore the growing opportunities in cable to adapt to these changing viewing habits by providing movies and other content on every platform,” said Mark Greenberg, president and CEO of Epix. “Epix is working closely with our operator partners to help them deliver our content to subscribers, whether it’s on TV, on demand, online and now on new devices with apps. As movie consumption on new devices continues to grow in popularity, we remain focused on providing our authenticated subscribers access to the best content and extra features in all the ways they want it.”

Additionally, the research delved into device preference for content consumption and confirmed personal computers have fully emerged as a commonly used means for movie viewing. They are now nearly as popular as televisions, with seven out of eight respondents indicating that they watch movies on computers.

Other notable survey findings include:

- TV networks prevail as the most common source for watching movies outside of theatres as nearly seven in eight steamers view films on broadcast (85 per cent) and basic cable networks (83 per cent) at least monthly.

- More than half (51 per cent) of online streamers/downloaders also watch movies monthly on premium channels.

- Although device ownership is already high among viewers of movies online, there is still strong purchase intent for popular mobile devices; over half (53 per cent) plan to purchase another broadband-enabled device such as a tablet, netbook, laptop or desktop computer and over a quarter (26 per cent) intend to get a mobile phone with Internet access over the next 12 months.

- TV sets connected to the Internet are growing in importance for online movie viewing, particularly among younger adults – 26 per cent of all streamers/downloaders and one in three in the 25-34 year-old age group say they stream movies on broadband-enabled TVs.

- 44 per cent of online video viewers utilise Internet Blu-ray players connected to TVs to watch movies.

Tapping into the changing viewing preferences of authenticated subscribers, Epix has unveiled apps for download on over one hundred consumer electronic and mobile devices including Android-powered tablets and phones; Samsung TVs and Blu-Ray players; Google TV; Roku streaming players; and the BlackBerry PlayBook which make Epix movies and originals available to authenticated subscribers wherever they choose to watch.

The survey was conducted online in April 2011 by global consumer research firm Ipsos OTX Media CT and results were compiled from a national sample of 500 respondents between the ages 25 and 64 who had streamed or downloaded video content during the previous six months.