Saturday, November 12, 2011

People Now Watch Videos Nearly 30 Percent Longer On Tablets Than Desktops | TechCrunch

Viewer engagement by device
It perhaps is counter intuitive, but a new study by Ooyala suggests that people spend more time watching long-form video on their tablets, than on their PCs.

Even more surprising, there is evidence that smart phone users, on the smallest screens, might be watching video at levels approaching PC viewing.

In fact, the Ooyala study already shows that viewer "engagement," defined as the percentage of any bit of content that the user actually watched, is higher on smart phones than on desktop PCs or game consoles, both of which offer the biggest screens.

Granted, the Ooyala report does confirm that, given a choice, most people seem to prefer watching video on the biggest available screen. But what might be surprising is the amount of viewing on the "smallest" screen--the smart phone--so much of the time.

Tablet viewers watch for longer periods of time than viewers of desktops or mobile devices, and tend to watch more of any single bit of video as well.

For each minute watched on a desktop, tablets recorded “1:17 in played content”, which works out to 28 percent longer than the desktop average. People Watch Videos Nearly 30 Percent Longer On Tablets

That tablet viewers are more than twice as likely to finish a video than desktop users might be explained by the fact that much tablet use occurs "on a couch, rather than at a desk," meaning the user is in a more-relaxed setting without the "I'm at work" mindset.
The completion rate for tablet viewers was double what it was for desktop viewing, and is 30 percent higher than that of mobile devices. 

It is just a historical anecdote, but 30 years ago, the best and brightest video executives would have adamantly insisted that people would not watch entertainment video on small screens. But that was a long time ago. Before optical fiber changed fixed networks. Before most people had mobile phones, much less smart phones. Before 3G and 4G. Before digital video and video compression. Before high-definition video. Before the Internet and the Web. 

It's just a reminder that what seems true "now" might not have been true in the past, and might not be true in the future. 

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