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Ofcom has released its latest 2013 Communications Market report for the UK - and this one takes a very hard look at Second Screen Social TV and multiplatform engagement - both from the point of second screen usage in relation to the TV and unrelated activities (such as email, social Media etc.)
Nielsen, in the USA have been leading the analysis on these new consumer behaviours with reports such as Action Figures: How Second Screens Are Transforming TV Viewing.
The most important point in both studies is that second screen behaviour is currently focussed on unrelated activities. But that is largely due to the fact that very few shows are actually attempting to engage users on the second screen in a meaningful way. The BAFTA award winning Million Pound Drop in the UK is probably the best example of a show which completes the feedback loop by allowing viewers to engage in a meaningful way and play along with the show with their second screens.
What kinds of program-related activities are UK adults doing while watching TV?
Among TV viewers, the most common behaviors are:
- Sending/receiving a text or instant message to/from friends or family about the program, with 17% having done this at some point;
- Making/receiving phone/voice calls to/from friends or family about the program (16%);
- Looking online for info about a program or something/someone seen in a program (12%); and
- Social networked to read/post/like/tweet/follow/interact/engage with a program (11%).
A little further down the list, 7% said they’ve looked online for information about an ad. Overall, 23% said their multitasking involves direct communication with friends and family, while 15% each said any social networking and any looking online for information.
As for unrelated second screen activity from consumers there's more stats pulled by Marketingcharts.com:
As mentioned above, media stacking behavior is more common with 59% of TV viewers having ever engaged in unrelated activities while watching TV. The most common of those?
- Browsing the internet (36%);
- Having a phone/voice/video call (29%);
- Sending or reading emails (24%);
- Sending or receiving a text or instant message (23%); and
- Using social networking sites (22%).
Wired.co.uk also notes that a quarter of UK population owns a tablet and live TV still rules.
Figures show that 91 percent of UK adults tune in to the main TVonce a week (up from 88 percent in 2002), but around 53 percent of us multi-task by looking at other media simultaneously. A quarter of us also communicate opinions through text messaging or social media about shows as we watch them.
Most people do this using smartphones -- which isn't surprising as now around half the UK adult population owns one -- but increasingly people usetablets to do so too. A quarter of people now own a tablet -- of which 11 percent use them in the bathroom -- and on average households now own more than three internet-enabled devices.
And more from Yahoo News:
The research found more than half of those questioned admitted watching other content on devices such as smartphones and tablets while the front room TV was blaring out in the background.
The annual Communications Market Report pinpoints that one in four homes now has a tablet computer - up from 11% last year - with just over half of all adults owning a smartphone, double the number two years ago.
But while these devices have become a distraction in the living room for many, the percentage of people viewing TV on their main set each week is actually up over the last decade from 88% to 91%.
However, just three per cent of those who responded to this study say they are using apps to communicate with programmes while watching.
Instead 49% are doing totally unrelated activities on their technology while sitting on the sofa in front of the television. More than a third are surfing the net, a fifth are on social networks and one in seven are spending out cash doing their online shopping.