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TV viewing up driven by mobile consumption

Digital technology is changing TV viewing habits, with UK residents now owning fewer TVs but watching more programmes across different devices, according to new research by the UK’s TV licensing body. 

TV Licensing’s Telescope 2013 report found that the average household now has 1.83 TV sets, down from an average of 2.3 in 2003. However, the average amount of time spent watching TV a day is 4 hours and 2 minutes, up from 3 hours 36 minutes a day in 2006.

At the same time, tablet and mobile sales soared last year, with smartphone ownership increasing to 39% and tablet ownership standing at 11% of UK homes, spurring a rise in mobile viewing. Some 27% of smartphone owners and 63% of tablet owners now use their device to watch live TV, the study said.

Elsewhere, the research found that while 47% of UK households own a PVR and have a total of more than 455 million hours of hours of TV saved. Yet despite this, 29% of people still own a VCR. Roughly 6% of homes now have a 3D-ready TV set.

Social networking is also allowing viewers to engage around TV in new ways, with 40% of all tweets found to be about television shows between 6.30pm and 10pm.