Second screen now the norm in TV

Editor ©RapidTVNews | 01-06-2012

In a matter of only months, ‘second screen’ has made the transition from being a mere conversation topic to an established part of the TV ecosystem new research from Futuresource Consulting is suggesting.
The analyst believes that the key drivers for what it describes as an explosion have been the emergence firstly of mass market smartphones and then, and perhaps more significantly as far as video applications are concerned, the arrival of tablets led by the iPad.
Moreover, the firm’s projections show that smartphone and tablet ownership growth is not being interrupted by the economic hardship currently endured in Europe and so the usage of a second screen device is going to expand. Tablet ownership is for instance set to grow more than fourfold.
Futuresource’s recently released Living With Digital research found that 62% of respondents say they use interactive devices while watching TV, with laptops and mobile phones topping the list of most commonly used equipment, and tablets rising fast. This figure rises to 85% of 16 to 18 year olds, and even more than half of 56 to 65 year olds use a second screen.

In terms of what second screen users are actually doing, it should be noted that the majority were involved in activities completely unrelated to TV such as checking emails, general web surfing and online shopping high. Yet it also found that around a quarter of consumers across all age groups are surfing online to find out more about the programme they are watching.
Despite these rosy predictions, Futuresource cautions that the challenge for the content community and broadcasters and just as important, their advertisers, is to try to boost the current 25% who are extending their engagement with the programme they are viewing and perhaps turn it into a revenue generating opportunity, via voting or perhaps the sale of tickets.