Viewers fast-forward their TV habits

WILLIAM MACE
Last updated 05:00 04/10/2012
Kiwis fast-forward TV habits
WATCH NOW OR LATER? The four most time-shifted TV programmes in New Zealand; Downton Abbey, Call the Midwife, Night at the Museum 2 and White Chicks.

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Thirty-nine per cent of Kiwis now have the ability to fast-forward television advertising breaks, and it's becoming “a national pastime”, according to one research company.

Television audience measurement company Nielsen has issued a report on the first six months of its new Time-Shifted Viewing measurement, which was launched in January.

Nielsen said there had been an 18 per cent rise in the ownership of personal video recorders [PVR], including MySky HDi boxes, between January and July this year.

MySky boxes were now available to 24 per cent of people; another 15 per cent had access to devices such as MyFreeview, TiVo and Telstra's T-Box.

Such devices allowed viewers to record TV shows and view them at a later time, with the option to fast-forward through ad breaks.

In its annual report this year Sky Television said 47 per cent of its subscribers, or 382,500 households, had the MySky recording and fast-forwarding capability.

“How we watch television is changing,” said Canstar New Zealand national manager Derek Bonnar.

“While viewing hours aren't changing much, dodging advertisements appears to be a bit of a national pastime.”

Nielsen, which measures the viewing behaviours of 600 households nationwide, including for shows that are being time-shifted to be watched up to seven days later, said its figures showed only 3 per cent of total TV viewing in the sample was time-shifted. Just 8 per cent of viewing in MySky and PVR households was time-shifted.

The top time-shifted show in the six months was Downton Abbey, with 1.8 per cent of its audience watching between one and seven days after the initial broadcast.

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- The Dominion Post

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