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Summer of the Binge: TV Streaming Displacing Beach Reading, Tanning

This summer, the average American has been more likely to flip on Netflix than to flip the pages of a book.

Summertime rituals are skewing toward binge-watching TV series on streaming services — and away from such classic pastimes as curling up with a good read and basking in the sun, according to a recent survey conducted by New York-based research and consulting firm Miner & Co. Studio.

About 67% of U.S. consumers surveyed said they’re reading fewer books than on previous summer vacations because they’re watching TV shows streamed online, and 62% are also more likely to stream in places where they used to read (e.g., on a porch or deck).

Moreover, 65% of users with Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime or other Internet VOD services agreed that they’re going to movie theaters less this summer “because I can stream most of the shows/series I want to watch,” while one-fourth said they’re watching less cable and satellite TV programming this year because of streaming.

And 59% of survey respondents agreed with the statement, “I am spending less time in the sun because I can stream shows/series.” Could the rise of binge-watching lead to lower rates of skin cancer?

See More: Binge-Viewing Is Becoming a Less Shameful Activity: Survey

On average, summer homeowners and renters have 3.5 streaming devices at their vacation home, and 48% say they’ve added more streaming devices this summer compared with years past. Overall, 86% of those surveyed say that “streaming has made summer TV viewing more enjoyable than previous summers/vacations.”

The ability to binge-watch TV series — which is becoming more socially acceptable, other studies have found — is a major reason why consumers love subscription VOD services. About 87% said they have watched or planned to watch three or more episodes of a series in one sitting while vacationing this summer, and 76% agreed that binge-watching is now commonplace for their families and friends while on holiday.

Netflix and YouTube are the most popular streaming-video services, used by 90% and 93% of survey respondents, respectively. Another 77% said they stream episodes from TV network websites.

In July-August 2015 Miner & Co. surveyed 800 U.S. adults age 18-59 who are streaming or plan to stream video content this summer. The poll has a 3.46% margin of error, according to the firm.

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