Adobe Tracks Mobile vs. TV Connected Device Usage

Adobe’s TV Everywhere study shows that people are increasingly watching home television on TV Connected Devices (TVCD) as opposed to mobile devices. Mobile viewing is actually losing ground to TVCD viewing, say researchers.

Adobe has been data mining its TV Everywhere database and has discovered some surprising, if not counter-intuitive, insights into consumer viewing trends. The results are revealed in the just-released “State of Digital Video 2017” Adobe Digital Insights report.

Adobe gathers its TV Everywhere data from a wide spectrum of providers of digital content including entertainment, sports, news. The information is generated by when viewers log in to view their provider's content. The analysts call this process an “authentication”. Each provider then aggregates that information and contributes it to the TV Everywhere database.

“We looked at over 4 billion TV Everywhere authentications in the U. S and Canada,” Becky Tasker, senior managing analyst, Adobe Digital Insights, revealed to The Broadcast Bridge in an exclusive interview, “and tracked how people are watching ‘logged in’ content on demand such as online video in the home on a smart TV, what we call a TV Connected Device (TVCD), or a mobile device like a cell phone or tablet.”

What they found is that mobile viewing is actually losing ground to TVCD viewing.

“Historically, this was known as ‘TV on the go’,” Tasker said, “but my team has tracked a different pattern where people are watching stationary TVCD devices in their living room. They are still logging in, but not carrying it around. What they are getting their content from includes providers like Apple TV or Roku boxes, but not your standard cable networks or over-the-air TV.”

When they looked at this shift, Tasker’s team found that TVCD’s have gained significantly as compared to mobile devices or viewing video on a browser.

TVCDs are growing in popularity compared to mobile devices. (Click to expand.)

TVCDs are growing in popularity compared to mobile devices. (Click to expand.)

Their results show that consumers have traded in their mobile viewing for TVCDs. Over the last two years, mobile viewing decreased from 54% to 46%, while TVCDs increased from 20% to 32%.

And TVCDs surpassed browsers by 32% to 22%

The  growth of TVCDs over past two years. (Click to expand.)

The growth of TVCDs over past two years. (Click to expand.)

“Understand, these are savvy TV consumers who want to take control of their viewing consumption into their own hands,” Tasker said, “that’s why this trend toward watching on home TVCDs is so significant and a competitor to traditional television.”

This growth seems to be accelerating.

TVCD viewing grew by 349% over the past two years and is the only segment in this sample group where growth continues to accelerate.

TVCD viewing popularity has outstripped browser or even mobile viewing in past year. (Click to expand.)

TVCD viewing popularity has outstripped browser or even mobile viewing in past year. (Click to expand.)

Both mobile (phone and tablet) and browser access grew less than 20% year-over year after showing stronger gains the year before.

Overall video viewing and the number of users continue to rise.

TVE (TV Everywhere) video starts increased by 102% in two years.

TVE viewers increased by 110% in the same time period as video consumption increases on all platforms and throughout all demographics.

TV Everywhere viewing is growing y/y. (Click to expand.)

TV Everywhere viewing is growing y/y. (Click to expand.)

(Author's conclusion)

The biggest impact of these findings may be for advertisers.

Tasker’s group found that the cost per million for video ads on TVCD devices are 2X the cost for mobile devices, yet the common wisdom is that mobile device viewing is the wave of the future.

Perhaps, based on studies such as this one conducted by Adobe Digital Insights, we’ll have to re-think that.

Let us know what you think…

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