Streaming to TVs accelerates past mobile, PC
Michelle Clancy
| 30 October 2014
Streaming films and television shows via set-top boxes, game consoles and smart TVs is giving live TV a run for its money among those with access to it.

According to the second year results of the New Living Room studyfrom Frank N Magid Associates, viewers are streaming video on a connected TV at a record pace during prime time, and more than half of adults surveyed prefer streaming to a connected TV over other devices in the home including PC, tablet and mobile phone.

A full 62% of consumers stream to their connected TV (over-the-top devices, smart TVs and gaming consoles) up from 54% last year, compared to 48% on their computer, 28% on their tablet and 23% on their mobile phone.

The survey of adults aged 18-49 also found that streaming video across all devices is the second consideration in the evening, right after watching what's currently airing on TV. While this was true last year, the number of consumers who are streaming video on a connected TV device is on a rapid rise and is the preferred viewing method overall. According to the data, 61% stream video weekly is up from 44% last year, with 72% of Millennials streaming weekly, up from 52%.

Additionally, with the influx of video-on-demand (VOD) services, free on-demand networks that take advertising are now gaining preference over subscription services. In fact, 57% of consumers increasingly prefer free, ad-supported programming on connected TV over subscription pay-services up from 51% last year. Granted, the study was sponsored by Crackle, Sony's free streaming service, but if it's accurate, it's a staggering statistic given Netflix's growth.

"Last year, we saw that streaming video on connected TV devices was outpacing all other non-linear viewing habits this year's study surpassed our expectations," said Eric Berger, Sony Pictures Television's executive vice president of digital networks and GM at Crackle. "Viewer consumption on CTV devices is soaring in popularity not only for individuals, but also overwhelmingly for co-viewing among groups in the living room."

He added: "The data also clearly supports a strategy of addressing consumer demand with movies, TV series and original programming that are offered free with advertising on all game consoles, streaming boxes and smart TVs."