The average UK household now owns more than three types of internet-enabled devices and tablet ownership has more than doubled in the last year. Over 50% of adults in the UK now own a smartphone. These trends are impacting how the population consumes and interacts with digital media.
Ofcom, the UK’s communications industries regulator, has released its latest Communications Market Report, providing a snapshot of changing media behaviour in UK households.
- 24% of households now own a tablet computer.
- 95% use it at least once a week; two thirds use it every day
- 9% of households own more than one tablet device
- Half of tablet owners say “they couldn’t live without them”
- A third of them use their tablets as their main way of connecting to the internet
- Half of tablet users have downloaded one or more TV apps
Changes in TV viewing
The growth of tablet ownership is driving the trend of ‘second screening’:
- 22% of households with a tablet use it to watch different content in the same room all or most of the time
- More adults are watching TV on their main set than a decade ago (91% up from 88% in 2002)
- 53% of UK adults are ‘media multi-tasking’ while watching TV
- 25% are ‘media meshing’ while watching TV – this includes texting about what they are watching; tweeting or using apps to communicate directly with programmes
- 49% are using devices to undertake unrelated tasks while watching TV – anything from online shopping to social networking
- The number of TVs per household is in decline – but the screens are getting bigger
Teens texting less
- 84% of 16-24 year olds use at least one form of web-based communication (email; instant messaging; social media) every week
- 80% of them are texting at least every week
- Social networking is now the most popular form of web-based communication
The report also covers growth rates in superfast broadband; household spend on media and communications; radio and TV industry revenues and online shopping.
You can download the report here.
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