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Half of US web homes have connected TV devices

Amazon Fire TVHalf of US internet homes now own a connected TV device, such as a games console, streaming media player or smart TV, according to NPD Group.

The new research claims that the smart TV industry was a “primary driver” of growth and that the total number of US homes with a connected TV device is now 46 million, a 4 million home increase from Q2 2014.

“The increase in the number of homes that use a TV with apps is the result of three very important factors. Sales of TVs with apps have skyrocketed, their user interfaces have improved and there has been a surge in available premium services and programming,” said NPD’s executive director, Connected Intelligence, John Buffone.

According to NPD’s Retail Tracking Service, 45% of TVs sold in the US during Q2 supported apps, up from 34% last year and 24% two years ago, with more consumers also now connecting their smart TVs to the web.

In Q2, some 69% of all installed internet-capable TVs were connected, compared to 61% last year and 45% two years ago, said the research.

Netflix remained the “most commonly used” service among US homes with connected TVs in Q2, followed by YouTube, Amazon Prime/Instant Video, Hulu and HBO Go or HBO Now.

“We’re living in the golden age of TV where significant investments are being made in developing original series. This is being enabled by growth in online services such as Hulu and Amazon Video as well as industry leading TV networks benefiting from the large pay TV subscriber base and fast developing over-the-top audience that uses apps on TV,” Buffone.