Dual-Screen Tablet Owners Shop While Watching TV

July 18, 2012

iab-abi-mobile-activities-while-watching-tv-july2012.png59% of TV-watching tablet owners say they have shopped using their device while watching TV at home in the past 3 months, double the proportion (29%) of TV-watching smartphone users who say the same, according to [pdf] a survey commissioned by the IAB and conducted by ABI Research, released in July. Neither group reports shopping as their most frequent dual-screen activity, though. Rather, these dual-screen consumers are more likely to communicate via the internet, browse the internet, or access social media while watching TV.

TV time is a significant time for mobile use, as data from “Mobile’s Role in the Consumer’s Media Day” reveals. When asked about their mobile use during the day, users were given a typical continuum of: wakeup; mealtime; work; shopping; after work; waiting; commuting; break-time; TV-time; and bedtime. Among smartphone users, a plurality (28%) said they most use their device to access general media while waiting, while TV-time was second-highest at 17%. Among tablet users, TV-time rated second for general media consumption on their devices, at 27%, behind the after-work period (28%).

Ad Responders Are Media Cannibals

The news isn’t always good in terms of a happy relationship between TV and mobile devices. Further data from the report indicates that device ownership can reduce media time for some: 15% of smartphone users claim the devices drive them to watch less TV, and 24% of tablet users report the same. But those numbers rise among ad responders (who respond to ads on their device): 23% of smartphone ad responders watch less TV due to activity on their devices, as do 27% of tablet ad responders.

Even so, tablet “big spenders” (who spend $50 or more on their devices monthly) are as likely to watch more TV as to watch less TV due to their device (both at 28%).

Ads About TV Generate Low Receptiveness

On both devices, ads that relate to recent TV or radio viewing generally rate low in receptiveness among users. Looking at ad types that owners say they are likely to respond to on their devices, ads related to recent TV or radio viewing come in 10th of 13 types for both tablet and users, behind others such as: ads for coupons; ads related to what they were shopping for; ads related to favorite brands; and location-based ads.

This suggests that while a connection can be made between TV viewing and mobile shopping, device owners are more likely to be using their devices to augment their entertainment experiences. Indeed, according to a Pew Internet & American Life Project survey released in July, while half of adult mobile owners are incorporating their mobile devices into their TV-watching experiences, the most popular uses are: to occupy themselves during commercials or breaks (38%); to exchange text messages with someone else watching the same program (23%); to check the truth of something they heard on TV (22%); and to visited a website that was mentioned on TV (20%).

About the Data: The IAB commissioned ABI Research to conduct the survey behind the “Mobile’s Role in the Consumer’s Media Day” report. For this survey, the sample was balanced at 50% males and 50% females in the US, and aimed for the following typical census age groups: 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-64, and 65+. ABI Research surveyed 552 US consumers who use a smartphone at least once a week and use a data service, and 563 US tablet users who also are on their devices at least once a week and utilize data service too.

The results in the Pew report are based on data from telephone interviews conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International from March 15 to April 3, 2012, among a sample of 2,254 adults, age 18 and older. Telephone interviews were conducted in English and Spanish by landline (1,351) and cell phone (903, including 410 without a landline phone).


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