30% Of Web Users Worldwide Own A HDTV: Nielsen Survey

Jonathan Sutton

One of the largest surveys ever conducted on how the world population watches video has among other things found that 30% of the web-connected consumers worldwide are HDTV owners, and that television in the living room remains the most popular screen used globally to consume video, even though as technology advances, more video-watching platforms such as the internet, mobile phones and tablet PCs are made available to consumers who wish to be informed or entertained by videos.

Nielsen, the US-based media research authority, asked more than 27,000 people in 55 countries to answer some simple questions about their video-viewing behaviour in an online survey. While admitting that the result of the survey might be skewed because of unequal access to internet across different regions, Nielsen believed that at least it painted a more accurate picture of how the subset of internet-connected population throughout the world are watching video via different methods.

Despite the onslaught of various new devices on which consumers can watch videos, television in the home is still the most widely use video screen globally. According to the survey, all around the world 90% of the respondents use their TV at home at least once a month, with users in many countries spending more than 4 hours a day watching television. Europe had the lowest TV viewing penetration: online consumers in this region were less likely to have watched television in the last 30 days compared to the rest of the world.

The survey also gave some insight into the prevalence of high-definition television (HDTV) sets. 3 out of 10 of the survey respondents are HDTV owners, with adoption reported to be highest among adults aged 55-59 (a group with more disposable income and time to spend) and in North America (due to lower prices and greater availability of HD content). Interestingly, as a standalone country Australia has the highest HD TV ownership in the world – its citizens are almost twice as likely to own a HDTV as the worldwide average – but this is partly because in Australia, images with resolution of 576p (rather than the 720p minimum embraced by the rest of the world) are deemed sufficient to qualify as “high-definition”.

When it comes to 3D TV, 12% of the online respondents worldwide either own or are thinking about buying one, with consumers in the 25-29 age group and in the MEAP (Middle East, Africa and Pakistan) and Latin America showing the highest interest.