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TV Still the Primary Focus

12 Feb, 2014 By: Doug McPherson

SAN JOSE, Calif. – A new study from TiVo Inc. says if a TV set is on, it’s the key focus in the home even though many viewers report having multitasked at least once while watching TV (69 percent browse the web, 48 percent cook and 23 percent chat online, for example).

Yet 76 percent of people say their primary focus is actually watching what's on TV. More than 45 percent of TiVo users and 35 percent of non-TiVo users said their attention was directed only towards TV, and not to anything else, while watching.

Among the multitaskers watching TV, 61 percent use smartphones most frequently, and 6 percent use portable gaming systems least frequently. However, numbers drop when asked about frequent device usage while watching TV. About a quarter (24 percent) report using smartphones every time or almost every time they watch TV.

Many respondents say they use the Internet to find content related to their favorite shows, only 27 percent said they do so while watching their programs. (Online activity occurs after watching a program – 14 percent do that right after watching and 32 percent search sometime during the following week.)

Most TV viewers don’t use the Internet (not including social media) to connect with others to discuss TV shows. A full 61 percent of TiVo users and 55 percent of non-TiVo users agreed with the statement: "I only want to discuss TV with people I know, not with Internet strangers." And 43 percent of social media users also agreed with that statement; they prefer to turn to their social networks versus open Internet forums to interact with others to discuss TV programming.

Nearly 70 percent of respondents who were TiVo users said they actually notice TV hashtags. But of those, 63 percent said they don't like seeing them during shows, while only 3 percent said they liked seeing them.

TiVo conducted the online survey of 1,660 households Oct. 16-Nov. 7, 2013.

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