TV set ‘roaring back’ into device ecosystem with usage growing faster than mobile, Roku says


While TV watching on mobile devices continue to proliferate, the traditional living-room TV set is regaining lost share and remains the dominant viewing device.

That’s the conclusion put forth by a Video Advertising Bureau study and recently confirmed by leading connected device maker Roku.

“Call it ‘revenge of the TV,'” said Steve Shannon, general manager of content and services for Roku, speaking earlier this month at the Streaming Media West trade event in Huntington Beach, California.

Shannon said viewing of video on connected TVs is still “80 times” greater than on mobile devices. “The TV is roaring back into the ecosystem,” he added. “We’re coming from a place where the only internet-connected hardware was smart phones and tablets. The TVs simply weren’t connected.”

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According to the VAB, as of the end of June, use of smart TVs had increased 33 percent year-over-year versus just 9 percent for mobile devices. 

“Of all the emerging platforms, enabled smart TVs are growing the fastest,” said Everlyn Skurkovich, VP of strategic research and insights for the VAB. “This reinforces the fact that people dedicate the most attention to TV content, and to watching on a TV screen.”

According to Skurkovich’s study, even millennial-age consumers prefer TV sets to mobile, with 85 percent of their viewing time spent on TV sets.

“Millennials still like TV, and they don’t necessarily like watching on their mobile phone,” Shannon said. 

Of course, this is not to say mobile video consumption isn’t growing. According to another study just released by Ericsson, average usage is up 200 hours a year since 2012.