What’s On

Rise of digital devices drives new viewing habits in APAC: TNS

  • Three quarters of internet users globally still watch TV daily
  • Almost half of TV viewers are ‘screen-stacking’ in the evening
  • A quarter worldwide now watch online video daily on a digital device

Adults around the world remain hooked on TV but the consumption habits of content-hungry viewers are changing rapidly. While a consumer’s love affair with television endures, TV sets alone are no longer enough to satisfy audience’s appetite for content, driving the growth of online media and ‘screen-stacking’ as a result.

Connected Life, a TNS study of over 55,000 internet users worldwide, the research agency found that almost half of people (48 per cent) who watch TV in the evening simultaneously engage in other digital activities, such as using social media, checking their emails or shopping online. This trend has really taken hold in Singapore and rises to three out of five (61 per cent) people taking part in ‘screen-stacking’ activities whilst watching TV.

The survey found that consumers now own approximately four digital devices each, rising to five among Singaporean, Australian and German respondents. This, combined with demand for TV and video content on-the-go, is fuelling the rise of multi-screening or ‘screen-stacking’ – the use of multiple digital devices at the same time.

“This constant connectivity across multiple devices has come to the fore during the FIFA World Cup in recent weeks. People the world over are engaging with the event in various ways across different devices – watching it on TV, tablet or mobile, whilst also engaging in conversations on social media. It’s a perfect example of how screen-stacking behaviour has really taken hold,” said Joe Webb, Head of Digital, TNS Asia Pacific.

TNS Connected Life Infographic
The desire to access favourite TV shows at all hours of the day is also driving online TV usage, which extends access to them. One quarter (25 per cent) of those surveyed now watch content on a PC, laptop, tablet or mobile daily. This rises to one third (33 per cent) in mainland China and Singapore and 32 per cent in Hong Kong, where ‘phablets’ are increasingly popular.

Yet despite this surge in online consumption, traditional TV sets still play a huge part in a consumer’s live, with 70 per cent of respondents in Singapore sitting in front of the box every day – slightly less than the global average of 75 per cent. TV dinners are also alive and well, with 67 per cent of viewers in Singapore giving TV their undivided attention while eating in the evening – less than the global average of 76 per cent.

Many of the big global media companies are already taking advantage of growing online viewing trends, offering on-demand services such as toggle or mioTV GO which allow people to access premium content wherever they are through their phones or tablets.

Commenting on the findings for Singapore, Jon Foged, Managing Director, TNS Singapore, said, “It’s no surprise that people in Singapore are leading the trend in screen-stacking – strong legacy PC ownership and a real appetite for the latest gadget, coupled with strong island-wide data access has given us the ability to be online anytime, anywhere. This multi-tasking means advertisers need to think integrated more than ever before – planning campaigns and engagement activities that take into account our ‘digitally distracted’ way of life.”

Noor Fathima Warsia

A veteran journalist in the Indian marketing, media and advertising fraternity, Noor Fathima Warsia took on the role of Group Editor -– APAC for Digital Market Asia in May 2013. Noor has focussed on tracking trends and developments in the Indian media industry.