Second Screening Screwing Sales of Second Screens?

The popularity of second-screen behaviour is growing fast – thats unlikely to be news to you, but according to the results of Ericsson ConsumerLabs annual study, it might actually be taking over from viewing content on a separate TV set or set-top box, as sales of Sky+ style personal video recorder boxes decline.

According to Ericssons TV & Video Consumer Trend Report : “The average home entertainment setup is moving away from using separate screens in each room. A growing number of households instead use a large main TV supplemented by a number of mobile devices that provide access to services from all over the home. Tablets in particular have grown to become a popular device for viewing content in the home, despite the fact that the technology is relatively new.”

On a weekly basis, 60 per cent of consumers are using on-demand video services. Its not clear how much that is accounted for by mobile devices specifically, but half of the time spent watching video on smartphones is done outside the home – good news, presumably, for operators looking to increase mobile data revenues.

Meanwhile, 62 per cent browse social networking sites and forums weekly while watching TV.  Again, the research doesnt specify how many were using a mobile device, but Ericsson points to smartphones being the most commonly-used devices, alongside desktop. Apparently this number is growing, and 40 per cent of these second-screeners are actually discussing what they are currently watching.

Theres still a gap in the VOD market, though, for one service to break through and be successful, according to Ericsson ConsumerLab senior advisor Niklas Rönnblom. 

“As the number of screens and services increase, people are eagerly looking for an easy-to-use, aggregated service that can bring everything together,” says Rönnblom. “It should allow consumers to mix on-demand and linear TV including live content, facilitate content discovery, leverage the value of social TV and provide seamless access across devices.”


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