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5.4%. It’s a small figure, to be sure. But, it’s one that looks like it will keep steadily growing. Indeed, the share of time spent watching online video on mobile phones and tablets continues to increase, passing 5% in August and hitting 5.4% in September, according to [download page] a November 2012 report from Ooyala. Much of the growth in Q3 could be attributed to tablets, which accounted for 3.2% of overall time spent watching online video in September, almost double April’s share (1.69%).

Overall, the 5.4% share of online video consumption attributed to mobiles and tablets represents a 64% jump from 3.29% in April. Tablets alone in September accounted for almost as much video consumption as mobiles and tablets collectively did in April.

Tablets Well-Suited For Long-Form Content

Further details from the Q3 report support tablets as a viable medium for long-form content consumption. That’s important for advertisers, because ads served in long-form content generally see higher completion rates than those served in short- or medium-form content. Tablet owners are an attractive audience – particularly for e-retailers – because they tend to have higher e-commerce conversion rates than smartphone owners, while maintaining similar average order values.

To put the tablet viewing experience in perspective, according to Ooyala, 71% of tablet video views were of long-form content such as movies and TV shows. That’s a significant rise from 46% in Q1. In fact, about 60% of all time spent watching video on tablets was for content more than a half-hour long.

Tablet Viewers Have High Completion Rates

In Q3, tablet viewers and those watching on connected TVs and gaming consoles (CTV & GC) again demonstrated the highest engagement rates. For example, the playthrough rate on tablets for videos longer than 10 minutes was 39.2%, compared to 35.3% for CTV & GC, 26.8% for desktops, and 22.3% for mobile phones. For shorter content (10 minutes or less), tablets took second place behind connected TVs and gaming consoles, but remained ahead of desktops and mobile phones.

Other Findings:

  • Live video viewing for content such as sports and special events more than doubled on connected TVs and gaming consoles in Q3, likely due in part to the Olympics.
  • Desktop viewers watched live video in Q3 for an average of 39.5 minutes. That compares to 42.4 minutes for connected TV and gaming console viewers, 19.3 minutes for tablet viewers, and 11.5 minutes for mobile viewers.

About the Data: The data sample used in Ooyala’s report covers the third quarter of 2012, from July 1 through September 30. All data was taken from an anonymous cross-section of Ooyala’s global customer and partner database””an array of broadcasters, studios, cable operators, print publications, online media companies and consumer brands. These firms broadcast video to over 130 different countries from more than 6,000 unique domains. Nearly 200 million unique viewers watch an Ooyala-powered video every month. The data sample is not intended to represent the entire internet, or all online video viewers.

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