Video viewers choose tablets over smartphones, PCs

But consumers still prefer watching TV

The tablet is supplanting other devices as a go-to option for video viewing, but the good ol’ TV has nothing to worry about, according to a new Viacom survey.

The national online survey of 2,500 persons between the ages of 8 and 54 found that smartphones and PCs are less utilized for watching movies and TV episodes in households with tablet owners. Such homes spend 15% of total time watching full-length video on tablets, more than on all other devices except for TV, which commands approximately two-thirds of total time spent.

Asked to compare the viewing experience on TV with tablets, respondents preferred TV across criteria ranging from ease of use to picture quality.

The apps that those surveyed reported using to watch programming ranged from those provided by their MSOs, whose subscribers spent 20% more time on their tablet than non-subs, to Netflix and Apple’s Airplay.

The conglom conducted the study because with younger demos so well represented among the viewers for its biggest brands, there’s an urgency to understand their changing habits, according to Stuart Schneiderman, senior director of digital research at Viacom Media Networks.

“We need to be where they are, and if they are watching full-length videos on the tablet, we need to understand that and make it a great experience,” he said.

The survey was supplemented by interviews with select tablet owners. While iPads were the predominant tablet of choice among those surveyed, owners of similar devices from manufacturers ranging from Amazon to HP were also included.

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