The online video market continued to gain momentum in 2010, with an average of 179 million Americans watching video each month, according to a new white paper from comScore. “The 2010 US Digital Year in Review” indicates that engagement levels also rose during the year, with viewers watching online videos more frequently.
More than 88.6 million people watched online video on an average day in December 2010 (up 32% from December 2009), while viewing sessions totaled 5.8 billion for the month (up 13% year-over-year). Americans also spent about 12% more hours viewing online video in 2010 (14.2) compared the prior year (12.7) due to increased content consumption and more video ad streams. The average American streamed a record 201 videos in December 2010, up 8% from 187 a year earlier.
Online TV Viewing on Upward Trajectory
While Hulu continues to drive a large portion of online TV viewing activity, other major broadcast TV sites are playing an increasing role. In Q4 2010, Hulu accounted for 19.4 billion minutes (323 million hours) of online TV viewing, up 17% from the previous year.
In comparison, the five major broadcast TV sites (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and the CW) combined to account for 9.7 billion minutes (162 million hours), which equates to half of the total time spent viewing video on Hulu, but grew at approximately five times Hulu’s year-over-year rate at 82%. The total combined time spent viewing online TV on Hulu and the five network sites grew 33% during the past year.
Video Ads Small But Growing Share of Online Viewing
There has been a fairly consistent increase in video advertising as a percentage of total online viewing since June 2010, excepting a couple of one-month dips, which comScore says is a sign of the improving monetization of the medium. According to December 2010 comScore Video Metrix data, video ads comprised 16.4% of all videos streamed, up about 34% from 12.2% in June 2010.
Although video ads now account for approximately one in every six videos viewed, they do not yet represent a significant interruption to the online viewing experience, as they only account for 1.6% of all time spent viewing video (up 33% from 1.2% in June 2010).
Video Ads Perform Strongly
comScore data indicates video ad networks also performed strongly in 2010 due to the continued proliferation of video advertising, with video ads now reaching seven out of 10 Americans online and nearly half of Americans nationwide each month.
In December 2010, video ad networks served 5.9 billion ads, averaging 40 ads per viewer and 0.4 minutes per ad. Tremor Media Video Network took the top spot among video ad networks in December, delivering 1 billion ads to reach 40.8% of online video viewers, an average of 12 ads per viewer.
Meanwhile, BrightRoll Video Network reached 31.8% of online viewers and ADAP.TV reached fewer viewers (27.1%) but delivered a higher number of video ad streams (681.5 million).
22M US Mobile Users Watch Video
The number of US mobile subscribers 13 and older watching video on their mobile devices in Q2 2010 reached 21.9 million, according to new data from The Nielsen Company. This number reflected about a 43% increase in mobile video users from about 15.3 million in Q2 2009. Compared to 20.3 million mobile video users in Q1 2010, the number rose almost 8%.