People are watching more video than ever on every type of screen television, the Internet and mobile devices according to a report on the nation's viewing habits to be released by Nielsen Co.
Nielsen found that during the fourth quarter of 2008 the number of users and the time spent watching each of the three screen media rose from the previous quarter.
The biggest jumps came in the number of viewers watching video on mobile devices and "time shifted" television, that is, programming viewed with a digital-video recorder. Each rose about 9% in the fourth quarter from the third quarter. Roughly 11 million people used mobile viewing and 74 million people watched DVR programming. Internet video users increased 2.3% to 123 million people.
Traditional television is still the most popular by far. Roughly 285 million of the nation's 306 million people watched TV in their home in the fourth quarter, up about three million people, or 1%, from the prior quarter.
Television also wins in terms of the time spent on each medium. People spent more time watching TV, an average of 151 hours a month or five hours a day, a record high, according to Nielsen. That is a 7% increase, or roughly 11 hours more.
Internet video viewers, on the other hand, spent just under three hours on that a month, or 22 more minutes than the prior quarter, a nearly 15% increase.
For the first time in the Nielsen study, people ages 18-24 spent nearly the same amount of time roughly five hours watching Internet video each month as they did watching DVR programs. Other age brackets watched half as much or less Internet video than they did DVR video.
Online video viewing is increasingly seen as more valuable than DVR viewing because, unlike DVR viewing, viewers can't fast-forward through the advertising.
Television viewing, however, remains the most valuable for advertisers because of its breadth of audience.